Efficacy and safety of gefitinib in chemonaive patients with advanced non-small cell lung cancer treated in an Expanded Access Program

Ramaswamy Govindan, Ronald Natale, James Wade, Roy Herbst, Annetta Krebs, Richard Reiling, Thomas Hensing, Antoinette Wozniak, Chandra Belani, Karen Kelly, Judith Ochs

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9 Scopus citations


Chemotherapy (CT) is recommended in numerous clinical guidelines for advanced non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC) and offers improved survival over best supportive care. However, many patients with advanced NSCLC never receive CT because of advanced age, poor performance status, comorbidities, or patient refusal. The epidermal growth factor receptor tyrosine kinase inhibitor gefitinib has shown antitumor activity and a favorable toxicity profile in pretreated patients with recurrent advanced NSCLC and was made available in a worldwide Expanded Access Program (EAP) to >37,000 patients who did not respond to standard treatment or were ineligible for or refused CT. A retrospective chart review of 1671 consecutive patients enrolled at 11 sites in the US arm of the EAP identified 198 patients with advanced NSCLC who had not received previous CT. All patients were treated with gefitinib 250 mg/d until treatment failure or toxicity occurred. Patients were treated for a mean of 4.7 months. The most common adverse events were diarrhea (31.3%) and rash (31.3%). Complete and partial response rates were 0.7 and 5.6%, respectively, and 40.6% had stable disease. Median survival was 6 months, and estimated 1-year survival was 29.7%. The majority of patients did not receive subsequent CT.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)331-337
Number of pages7
JournalLung Cancer
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - Sep 1 2006


All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Oncology
  • Pulmonary and Respiratory Medicine
  • Cancer Research

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