Retrospective analysis of the efficacy of gemcitabine for previously treated AIDS-associated Kaposi's sarcoma in western Kenya.

Strother RM, Gregory KM, Pastakia SD, Were P, Tenge C, Busakhala N, Jakait B, Schellhase EM, Rosmarin AG, Loehrer PJ.

Oncology. 2010;78(1):5-11. doi: 10.1159/000292356. Epub 2010 Mar 6.

OBJECTIVES: Evaluation of outcomes in the use of single-agent gemcitabine for the treatment of AIDS-associated Kaposi's sarcoma (KS) in a western Kenyan cancer treatment program. METHODS: Retrospective chart review of all patients with KS treated with single agent gemcitabine following failure of first-line Adriamycin, bleomycin, and vincristine (ABV). Baseline demographics were collected, and clinicians' assessments of response were utilized to fill out objective criteria for both response as well as symptom benefit assessment. RESULTS: Twenty-three patients with KS who had previously failed first-line therapy with ABV were evaluated. Following treatment, 22 of the 23 patients responded positively to treatment with stable disease or better. Of the 18 patients who had completed therapy, with a median follow-up of 5 months, 12 patients had no documented progression. CONCLUSIONS: Treatment options in the resource-constrained setting are limited, both by financial constraints as well as the need to avoid myelotoxicity, which is associated with high morbidity in this treatment setting. This work shows that gemcitabine has promising activity in KS, with both objective responses and clinical benefit observed in this care setting. Gemcitabine as a single agent merits further investigation for AIDS-associated KS.

PMID: 20215784

From MEDLINE®/PubMed®, a database of the U.S. National Library of Medicine.