BACKGROUND: Induction chemotherapy followed by chemoradiation is a treatment option for patients with locally advanced pancreatic cancer (LAPC). However, overall survival is comparable to chemotherapy alone and local progression occurs in nearly half of all patients, suggesting chemoradiation strategies should be optimised. SCALOP-2 is a randomised phase II trial testing the role of radiotherapy dose escalation and/or the addition of the radiosensitiser nelfinavir, following induction chemotherapy of gemcitabine and nab-paclitaxel (GEMABX). A safety run-in phase (stage 1) established the nelfinavir dose to administer with chemoradiation in the randomised phase (stage 2). METHODS: Patients with locally advanced, inoperable, non-metastatic pancreatic adenocarcinoma receive three cycles of induction GEMABX chemotherapy prior to radiological assessment. Those with stable/responding disease are eligible for further trial treatment. In Stage 1, participants received one further cycle of GEMABX followed by capecitabine-chemoradiation with escalating doses of nelfinavir in a rolling-six design. Stage 2 aims to register 262 and randomise 170 patients with responding/stable disease to one of five arms: capecitabine with high- (arms C + D) or standard-dose (arms A + B) radiotherapy with (arms A + C) or without (arms B + D) nelfinavir, or three more cycles of GEMABX (arm E). Participants allocated to the chemoradiation arms receive another cycle of GEMABX before chemoradiation begins. Co-primary outcomes are 12-month overall survival (radiotherapy dose-escalation question) and progression-free survival (nelfinavir question). Secondary outcomes include toxicity, quality of life, disease response rate, resection rate, treatment compliance, and CA19-9 response. SCALOP-2 incorporates a detailed radiotherapy quality assurance programme. DISCUSSION: SCALOP-2 aims to optimise chemoradiation in LAPC and incorporates a modern induction regimen. TRIAL REGISTRATION: Eudract No: 2013-004968-56; ClinicalTrials.gov : NCT02024009.
Chemoradiation, Gemcitabine and nab-paclitaxel (GEMABX), Locally advanced pancreatic cancer (LAPC), Nelfinavir