Lay Summary: Activity of Alimta for gastric cancer is supported by phase II studies.
Gastric (stomach) cancer is the 14th most common cancer in the United States. Approximately 90% of gastric cancers are classified as adenocarcinomas, in reference to the type of cell within the stomach that the cancer originated. The main component of treatment for patients who cannot have their cancer surgically removed due to extent of spread and/or location of the cancer is chemotherapy. There are several standard chemotherapy regimens for advanced gastric cancer, all achieving approximately a 20% anti-cancer response rate and overall survivals of 6-7 months. Researchers from Italy conducted a clinical trial in 2003 to evaluate the chemotherapy agent Alimta® in the treatment of advanced gastric cancer. This trial involved 38 patients with advanced (stage IV) gastric cancer who were treated with Alimta®. Anti-cancer responses occurred in 21% of patients, with 2 patients achieving a complete disappearance of detectable cancer and 6 patients achieving a partial disappearance of cancer. Overall survival for this group of patients was 7.8 months. Side effects included low levels of blood cells.
Another single agent ALimta study was performed in Korea and can be seen athttp://www.lillytrials.com/results_files/alimta/alimta_summary_6154.pdf