Researchers at Chicago’s Northwestern University reported that Abraxane (nab-paclitaxel) nearly doubled progression-free survival compared with Taxotere (docetaxel) when used as first-line treatment in patients with metastatic breast cancer. William Gradishar, MD, led the phase II, open-label, randomized clinical study of 300 patients with previously untreated metastatic, stage IV breast cancer.
In the study, Abraxane was administered on a weekly schedule compared to injections every three weeks of Taxotere. Abraxane prolonged PFS by almost seven months, according to the results published in the Journal of Clinical Oncology (online, May 26, 2009).
“This is a win-win finding,” said Dr. Gradishar, director of breast medical oncology at the Robert H. Lurie Comprehensive Cancer Center. “The weekly schedule of Abraxane has more anti-tumor effects and is better tolerated than Taxotere. There is also evidence that Abraxane is able to deliver the chemotherapy drug more effectively to the tumor.”
The study was supported by Abraxis BioScience, which manufactures Abraxane. Dr. Gradishar is a member of the advisory boards for Abraxis and Sanofi-aventis U.S., the manufacturer of Taxotere.