A study looking at sunitinib with docetaxel for advanced breast cancer

Cancer type:

Breast cancer

Status:

Results

Phase:

Phase 3

This study was looking at adding the drug sunitinib to docetaxel as treatment for breast cancer that had come back or spread to another part of the body (advanced breast cancer). The women taking part had breast cancer that was HER2 negative Open a glossary item.

Doctors can use a chemotherapy drug called docetaxel to treat advanced breast cancer. Researchers wanted to find out if adding a drug called sunitinib improved treatment.

Sunitinib is a type of biological therapy. It is a cancer growth blocker. It stops signals that cancer cells use to divide and grow.

The aim of the study was to see if having sunitinib with docetaxel worked better than docetaxel alone for advanced breast cancer.

Summary of results

The trial team found that the length of time women lived without any sign of their cancer getting worse was about the same for women who had sunitinib and docetaxel as it was for women who had docetaxel alone.

The trial recruited 593 women at different hospitals in a number of countries. It was a randomised trial. The women taking part were put into 1 of 2 treatment groups

  • 296 were randomised to have docetaxel and sunitinib
  • 297 were randomised to have docetaxel alone

The number of women whose breast cancer responded to treatment was higher in the group who had sunitinib, but the length of time responses lasted was about the same in both groups. And women having sunitinib with docetaxel had more side effects than women having docetaxel alone.

Researchers found that the average length of time women had without any sign of their cancer getting worse was about the same in both groups. This was between 8 and 9 months.

The trial team concluded that although breast cancer responded to treatment more often in women who had sunitinib, it did not affect the average length of time before cancer started getting worse (progression free survival) or the average length of time women lived (overall survival).

We have based this summary on information from the team who ran the trial. The information they sent us has been reviewed by independent specialists (peer reviewed Open a glossary item) and published in a medical journal. The figures we quote above were provided by the trial team. We have not analysed the data ourselves.

Recruitment start:

Recruitment end:

How to join a clinical trial

Please note: In order to join a trial you will need to discuss it with your doctor, unless otherwise specified.

Please note - unless we state otherwise in the summary, you need to talk to your doctor about joining a trial.

Chief Investigator

Dr Peter Simmonds

Supported by

National Institute for Health Research Cancer Research Network (NCRN)
Pfizer

Questions about cancer? Contact our information nurses

Freephone 0808 800 4040

Last review date

CRUK internal database number:

Oracle 3009

Please note - unless we state otherwise in the summary, you need to talk to your doctor about joining a trial.

Harriet wanted to try new treatments

Picture of Harriet

“I was keen to go on a clinical trial. I wanted to try new cancer treatments and hopefully help future generations.”

Last reviewed:

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