Randomized, Phase II Study of Selumetinib, an oral inhibitor of MEK, in combination with cisplatin and gemcitabine chemotherapy for patients with advanced biliary tract cancer.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

  • External authors:
  • Mark K Doherty
  • Vincent C Tam
  • Raymond Jang
  • David Hedley
  • Eric Chen
  • Neesha Dhani
  • Patricia Tang
  • Hao-Wen Sim
  • Grainne M O'Kane
  • Stephanie De Luca
  • Lisa Wang
  • Theresa Pedutem
  • Jennifer J Knox


Cisplatin and gemcitabine (CisGem) is standard chemotherapy for advanced biliary tract cancer (BTC). The MEK inhibitor selumetinib showed synergy with gemcitabine when administered sequentially in BTC. This randomized phase 2 trial aimed to assess the efficacy of sequential or continuous selumetinib with CisGem.
Patients with advanced BTC received CisGem; arm A included selumetinib every day, arm B: selumetinib, days 1-5, 8-19 each cycle. Arm C received CisGem alone. Selumetinib was dosed at 75mg BID but amended to 50mg BID due to toxicity.
51 participants were evaluable for response. No significant difference was seen in mean change in tumor size at 10 weeks between Arm A and C (-7.8% vs -12.8%, p=0.54) or arm B and C (-15% vs -12.8%, p=0.78). There was no difference in median progression-free survival (6.0, 7.0, 6.3 months, p>0.95) or overall survival (11.7, 11.7, 12.8 months, p=0.70) for arms A, B and C, respectively. More participants experienced grade 3-4 toxicities in selumetinib-containing arms. More participants in arm A required chemotherapy dose reductions (p=0.01) with lower chemotherapy dose intensity during the first 10 weeks.
Adding sequential or continuous selumetinib to CisGem failed to improve efficacy and increased toxicity in patients with advanced BTC.

Bibliographical metadata

Original languageEnglish
JournalBritish Journal of Cancer
Publication statusAccepted/In press - 28 Jun 2022