Efficacy of First-line Chemotherapy Affects the Second-Line Setting Response in Patients with Advanced Non-Small Cell Lung Cancer


Background: Chemotherapy is the mainstay of treatment for the majority of patients with advanced nonsmall cell lung cancer (NSCLC) without driver mutations and many receive therapies beyond first-line. Secondline chemotherapy has been disappointing both in terms of response rate and survival and we know relatively little about the prognostic factors. Materials and
Methods: One thousand and eight patients with advanced NSCLC who received second-line chemotherapy after progression were reviewed in Shanghai PulmonaryHospital, China, from September 2005 to July 2010. We analyzed the effects of potential prognostic factors on the outcomes of second-line chemotherapy (overall response rate, ORR; progression free survival, PFS; overall survival, OS).
Results: The response and progression free survival of first-line chemotherapy affects the ORR, PFS and OS of second-line chemotherapy (ORR: CR/PR 15.4%, SD 10.1%, PD2.3%, p<0.001; PFS: CR/PR 3.80 months, SD 2.77 months, PD 2.03 months, p<0.001; OS: CR/PR 11.60 months, SD 10.33 months, PD 6.57 months, p=0.578, p<0.001, p<0.001, respectively). On multivariate analysis, better response to first-line therapy (CR/PR: HR=0.751, p=0.002; SD: HR=0.781, p=0.021) and progression within 3-6 months (HR=0.626, p<0.001), together with adenocarcinoma (HR=0.815, p=0.017), without liver metastasis (HR=0.541, p=0.001), never-smoker(HR=0.772, p=0.001), and ECOG PS 0-1 (HR=0.745, p=0.021) were predictors for good OS following secondline chemotherapy.
Conclusions: Patients who responded to first-line chemotherapy had a better outcome after second-line therapy for advanced NSCLC, and the efficacy of first-line chemotherapy, period of progression, histology, liver metastasis, smoking status and ECOG PS were independent prognostic factors for OS.