Abstract

Background: Advanced biliary tract cancer (ABC) has a poor prognosis for which cisplatin-gemcitabine is the reference first-line chemotherapy. No robust evidence is available for second-line chemotherapy. Methods: Patients with ABC who progressed on first-line cisplatin-gemcitabine were randomised to active symptom control (ASC) and oxaliplatin and 5-fluorouracil (FOLFOX) or ASC alone. The primary end-point was overall survival (OS); recruitment of 162 patients was required, to deliver 148 events (hypothesised hazard ratio (HR) 0.63; 80% power; 5% two-sided alpha). Secondary end-points included progression-free survival (PFS) and response rate (ASC+FOLFOX arm only). Results: A total of 162 patients were randomised (81 in each arm) between 27-Mar-2014 and 04-Jan-2018). The median age was 65 years (range 26-84); 80 (49%) were male and the primary tumour sites were intrahepatic cholangiocarcinoma (CCA) 72 (44%), extrahepatic CCA 45 (28%), gallbladder 34 (21%) and ampullary cancer 11 (7%). After 150 OS events, the adjusted HR was 0.69 (95%CI-0.50-0.97; p=0.031; ASC+FOLFOX vs ASC). Median OS (months (m)), 6m and 12m OS-rate (%) were 6.2m, 50.6% and 25.9% for the ASC+FOLFOX and 5.3m, 35.5%, 11.4% for the ASC arm, respectively. The median PFS was 4.0 months (95%-CI 3.2-5.0); the response rate was 5% and the disease control rate 33%. Grade 3-5 adverse events were reported in 56 (69%) and 42 (52%) patients in the ASC+FOLFOX and ASC arm, respectively, including two chemotherapy-related deaths. Conclusion: FOLFOX improved OS after progression to cisplatin-gemcitabine with a clinically-meaningful increase in 6m and 12m OS rate. FOLFOX should become standard-of-care in second-line for ABC. Trial Registration: NCT01926236, EudraCT: 2013-001812-30. Funding Statement: The study was sponsored by The Christie NHS Foundation Trust. The ABC-6 study was funded by Cancer Research UK (CRUK/13/004), StandUpToCancer, AMMF (The UK Cholangiocarcinoma Charity) and The Christie Charity. The Cholangiocarcinoma Foundation provided funding translational research. Dr Angela Lamarca received funding from ESMO (European Society for Medical Oncology), SEOM (Sociedad Espanola de Oncologia Medica) and Conquer Cancer Foundation (Young Investigator Award) fellowship programs and from The Christie Charity. Declaration of Interests: Dr Angela Lamarca received travel and educational support from Ipsen, Pfizer, Bayer, AAA, SirtEx, Novartis, Mylan and Delcath; speaker honoraria from Merck, Pfizer, Ipsen and Incyte; advisory honoraria from EISAI, Nutricia Ipsen, QED and Roche; she is also a member of the Knowledge Network and NETConnect Initiatives funded by Ipsen. Prof Daniel H Palmer declares research grants from AstraZeneca, Bayer, BMS, Nucana, Sirtex; and Consulting or Advisory roles for AstraZeneca, Bayer, BMS, Eisai, MSD, Servier, Roche. Harpreet Singh Wasan declares no conflict of interest associated to this work. Dr Paul J Ross declares research grants from research grants from Sanofi, Bayer; Consulting or Advisory roles for Bayer, BMS, Eisai, Sirtex, Roche; speaker fees from Amgen, Roche, Servier; Travel grants from Bayer, Roche, Servier. Dr Yuk Ting Ma declares speaker honoraria and advisory roles for Bayer, Eisai and Roche. Dr Arvind Arora declares no conflict of interest. Dr Stephen Flak declares no conflict of interest. Dr Roopinder Gilmore declares no conflict of interest. Prof Jon Wadsley declares research grants from AstraZeneca and Sanofi-Genzyme and Consulting or Advisory roles for Lilly, AstraZeneca, Sanofi Genyme, Eisai, AAA, Roche, Novartis, Ipsen. Dr Kinnari Patel declares no conflict of interest. Alan Anthony declares no conflict of interest. Prof Anthony Maraveyas declares research grants from Pfizer, BMS and Bayer. Speaker fees from BMS. Bayer Ipsen, EUSA Pharma, Daiichi Sankyo and Pfizer and advisory roles for Bayer ,BMS, Leo, Pfizer, Merck and Ipsen. Dr Tim Iveson declares no conflict of interest. Dr Justin S Walters received educational support for travel and conference attendance from Mylan and Ipsen, and speaker honoraria from Mylan. Dr Claire Hobbs declares no conflict of interest. Safia Barber declares no conflict of interest. David Ryder declares no conflict of interest. Prof John Ramage declares research grants, speaker fees and advisory roles for Ipsen, Novartis and AAA. Linda M Davies declares no conflict of interest. Prof John Bridgewater declares Consulting or Advisory role for Merck Serono, SERVIER, Roche, Bayer, AstraZeneca, Incyte and Basilea; travel support from MSD oncology, Merck Serono, Servier and BMS. Prof Juan W Valle declares Consulting or Advisory role for Agios, AstraZeneca, Delcath Systems, Keocyt, Genoscience Pharma, Incyte, Ipsen, Merck, Mundipharma EDO, Novartis, PCI Biotech, Pfizer, PierisPharmaceuticals, QED and Wren Laboratories; Speakers’ Bureau for Imaging Equipment Limited Ipsen Novartis Nucana; and Travel Grants from Celgene and Nucana. Ethics Approval Statement: The study was conducted in accordance with the principles of Good Clinical Practice and the Declaration of Helsinki. The study protocol was approved by a research ethics committee and all patients were required to provide written informed consent.

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