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Pertuzumab represents the first in a new class of targeted therapeutics known as HER dimerisation inhibitors. We conducted a phase Ib study to determine the maximum-tolerated dose, the dose limiting toxicities (DLT), and pharmacokinetic (PK) interaction of docetaxel when administered in combination with pertuzumab. Initially, two dose levels of docetaxel (60 and 75 mg m(-2)) were explored in combination with a fixed dose of 1050 mg of pertuzumab; then two dose levels of docetaxel (75 and 100 mg m(-2)) were explored in combination following a fixed dose of 420 mg of pertuzumab with a loading dose of 840 mg. Both drugs were administered intravenously every 3 weeks. The latter dose of pertuzumab was allowed after an amendment to the original protocol when phase II data suggesting no difference in toxicity or activity between the 2 doses became available. Two patients out of two treated at docetaxel 75 mg m(-2) in combination with pertuzumab 1050 mg suffered DLT (grade 3 diarrhoea and grade 4 febrile neutropaenia). Two out of five patients treated at docetaxel 100 mg m(-2) in combination with pertuzumab 420 mg with a loading dose of 840 mg suffered DLT (grade 3 fatigue and grade 4 febrile neutropaenia). Stable disease was observed at four cycles in more than half of the patients treated and a confirmed radiological partial response with a >50% decline in PSA in a patient with hormone refractory prostate cancer were observed. There were no pharmacokinetic drug-drug interactions. The recommended phase II dose of this combination was docetaxel 75 mg m(-2) and 420 mg pertuzumab following a loading dose of 840 mg.

Original publication




Journal article


Br J Cancer

Publication Date





1338 - 1343


Adult, Aged, Antibodies, Monoclonal, Antibodies, Monoclonal, Humanized, Antineoplastic Agents, Cohort Studies, Disease Progression, Docetaxel, Dose-Response Relationship, Drug, Drug Administration Schedule, Drug Therapy, Combination, Drug-Related Side Effects and Adverse Reactions, Female, Follow-Up Studies, Humans, Infusions, Intravenous, Male, Maximum Tolerated Dose, Middle Aged, Neoplasms, Receptor, ErbB-2, Recombinant Proteins, Taxoids, Time Factors, Treatment Outcome