Paclitaxel for non-small cell lung cancer

Sakkaraiappan Ramalingam, Chandra P. Belani

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

88 Scopus citations


Paclitaxel, a tubulin-binding agent, is widely used for the treatment of non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC). The combination of paclitaxel and a platinum compound is an approved regimen for the treatment of advanced NSCLC. The dose-limiting toxicity of paclitaxel is myelosuppression when administered on a prolonged infusion schedule, whereas neuropathy is more common with short infusions. Although the 3-weekly schedule of paclitaxel is the commonly utilised regimen for the treatment of advanced NSCLC, the weekly regimens appear to be associated with lesser myelosuppression and neuropathy. A randomised clinical trial is currently underway to compare the efficacy of the weekly versus 3-weekly regimen of paclitaxel, in combination with carboplatin for the treatment of advanced NSCLC. The radiosensitising effect of paclitaxel has led to its incorporation into multi-modality treatment of NSCLC patients in combination with thoracic radiation. Paclitaxel has also demonstrated synergistic interaction with several molecularly-targeted agents and is at present being evaluated in the neoadjuvant and adjuvant treatment settings for early stage NSCL.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1771-1780
Number of pages10
JournalExpert Opinion on Pharmacotherapy
Issue number8
StatePublished - Aug 2004

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Pharmacology
  • Pharmacology (medical)


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