Clinical pharmacology of carboplatin administered in combination with paclitaxel Article Conference Paper uri icon


MeSH Major

  • Antineoplastic Agents
  • Clinical Trials as Topic
  • Drug Discovery


  • The clinical pharmacology of carboplatin (c) administered with paclitaxel (Taxol; Bristol-Myers Squibb Company, Princeton, NJ) (P) was investigated in two phase 1 studies undertaken in 83 previously untreated patients with either non-small cell lung cancer or ovarian cancer. Carboplatin was administered over 30 minutes and paclitaxel over 3 hours. Both agents were given every 4 weeks. Non-small cell lung cancer patients were randomized to two administration sequences, either carboplatin followed by paclitaxel (C→P) or the reverse (P→C). Each patient received the alternate sequence during the second and subsequent courses. Ovarian cancer patients uniformly received paclitaxel before carboplatin. Platinum concentrations in plasma ultrafiltrate were measured via flameless atomic absorption spectrometry, and 122 concentration-time curves were obtained. For non-small cell lung cancer patients, the mean area under the concentration- time curve (AUC) per 300 mg/m2 carboplatin was 3.52 mg/mL · min (range, 1.94 to 5.83) for the sequence C→P and 3.62 mg/mL · min (range, 1.91 to 5.01) for the sequence P→C. No sequence-dependent effect was observed (P > .5). For ovarian cancer patients, the mean AUC per 300 mg/m2 carboplatin was 3.83 mg/mL · min (range, 2.72 to 6.10), showing no difference when compared with data derived from non-small cell lung cancer patients (P = .13). In addition, the carboplatin AUC was not influenced by increasing paclitaxel doses from 100 to 250 mg/m2. Neutropenia was the principal toxicity, and anemia was frequent. However, there was a striking lack of thrombocytopenia. Modeling of the relationship between the carboplatin AUC and the decrease in platelets revealed a 50% decrease in platelets at a carboplatin AUC (AUC50) of 6.3 mg/mL · min. This contrasts with historical data documenting a carboplatin AUC50 of 4.0 mg/mL · min. Our findings suggest that there is a considerable interaction of both drugs at the cellular level, with at least an additive effect of carboplatin on the main hematologic toxicity of paclitaxel tie, neutropenia). There is also a protective effect exerted by paclitaxel on carboplatin-related toxicity tie, thrombocytopenia). The clear protective effect of paclitaxel in this combination suggests that it is possible to reduce the dose interval to 3 weeks. Studies are in progress to test this hypothesis and to investigate the underlying pharmacologic interactions.

publication date

  • March 22, 1997



  • Conference Paper


PubMed ID

  • 9045347

Additional Document Info


  • 24


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