Extended-duration therapy in advanced non-small-cell lung cancer: Promise and pitfalls

Benjamin Levy, Alexander Drilon, Kar Leung Siu, Michael Grossbard

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

1 Scopus citations


For many years, the cornerstone of treatment for non-small-cell lung cancer (NSCLC) has been third-generation platinum-based chemotherapy. Unfortunately, clinical outcomes with the use of this approach have remained poor, with median survival times of only 8-13 months. In an attempt to improve survival, several therapeutic strategies have recently been investigated, including extended-duration chemotherapy. Although historically maintenance chemotherapy in NSCLC has resulted in less-than-optimal outcomes and there has been a recent surge in interest with this treatment modality. This has been in part because of the strategy of the early delivery of a non-cross-resistant agent after platinum chemotherapy, now termed switch maintenance therapy. Results from several recent phase III trials using this strategy are shifting the treatment paradigm of patients with advanced-stage NSCLC. Despite more favorable outcomes demonstrated with this strategy, study designs and reported results have not been without critique. Here, we review all published extended-duration chemotherapy strategies in NSCLC and seek to clarify outstanding issues as they relate to more recent approaches using this strategy. Copyright Clearance Center.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)383-390
Number of pages8
JournalClinical lung cancer
Issue number6
StatePublished - Nov 1 2010
Externally publishedYes


  • Carboplatin
  • Cisplatin
  • Doxorubicin
  • Gemcitabine
  • Lomustine
  • Methotrexate
  • Navelbine
  • Paclitaxel

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Oncology
  • Pulmonary and Respiratory Medicine
  • Cancer Research


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