NEW YORKAn innovative clinical trial to be conducted at Columbia University is now recruiting patients with advanced pancreatic cancer. The patients will test the effectiveness of the Gonzalez regimen, which combines a strict diet of fresh fruits, vegetable juices, dietary supplements, and pancreatic enzyme extracts with a detoxification program. John Chabot, MD, a surgical oncologist at Columbia, is the principal investigator.
The researchers are seeking 72 to 90 patients with advanced pancreatic cancer for the phase III randomized study, which is being sponsored by the NCIs newly established Office of Cancer Complementary and Alternative Medicine. Half the patients will receive standard therapy with gemcitabine(Drug information on gemcitabine) (Gemzar), while the other half will take the Gonzalez regimen.
Pilot Study Promising
The trial, which was given a 5-year, $250,000 grant, is applying scientific methods to assess the efficacy of this alternative treatment. The NCI agreed to test the regimen after Nicholas Gonzalez, MD, a New York endocrinologist, conducted a pilot study of his protocol from 1993 to 1996. The results, reported earlier this year in Nutrition and Cancer, showed that 9 of 11 pancreatic patients survived for 1 year, five survived for 2 years, and four survived for 3 years.
For information about patient entry to the trial, contact Michelle Gabay, RN (212-305-9468) at Columbia Presbyterian Cancer Center.