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Etanercept in Treating Cancer-Related Cachexia and Anorexia in Patients With Advanced Cancer

Information source: National Cancer Institute (NCI)
Information obtained from ClinicalTrials.gov on August 03, 2007
Link to the current ClinicalTrials.gov record.

Condition(s) targeted: Anorexia; Cachexia; Unspecified Adult Solid Tumor, Protocol Specific

Intervention: etanercept (Drug); anticachectic therapy (Procedure); complications of therapy assessment/management (Procedure); nutritional support (Procedure); supportive care/therapy (Procedure)

Phase: Phase 3

Status: No longer recruiting

Sponsored by: North Central Cancer Treatment Group

Official(s) and/or principal investigator(s):
Aminah Jatoi, MD, Study Chair, Affiliation: Mayo Clinic


RATIONALE: Etanercept is a substance that is being studied as a treatment for cachexia (weight loss) and anorexia (lack of appetite) in patients who have cancer. It is not yet known whether etanercept is effective in improving cancer-related cachexia and anorexia.

PURPOSE: Randomized phase III trial to determine the effectiveness of etanercept in treating cancer-related cachexia and anorexia in patients who have advanced cancer.

Clinical Details

Official title: Phase III Placebo-Controlled, Randomized, Double-Blind Comparison Of Etanercept (Enbrel) Versus Placebo For The Treatment Of Cancer-Associated Weight Loss And Anorexia

Study design: Interventional, Supportive Care, Randomized, Double-Blind, Placebo Control

Primary outcome: Comparison of weight gain and rate of weight change

Secondary outcome:

Differences in appetite

Overall survival

Incidence of treatment-related toxicity

Comparison of quality of life (QOL) as assessed by the QOL UNISCALE and the Functional Assessment of Cancer Therapy-Anorexia/cachexia (FACT-An) scale at baseline, weekly for one month, and then monthly during study treatment

Detailed description: OBJECTIVES:

* Compare etanercept vs placebo in the treatment of cancer-related cachexia and anorexia, in terms of weight measurement and rate of weight change, in patients with advanced malignancies.

* Determine the effect of this drug on nausea and vomiting in these patients.

* Assess the functional status and appetite of patients treated with this drug.

* Assess the quality of life of patients treated with this drug.

* Determine the toxic effects of this drug in these patients.

* Determine whether this drug prolongs survival of these patients.

OUTLINE: This is a randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled, multicenter study. Patients are stratified according to primary malignant disease (lung vs gastrointestinal vs other), severity of weight loss (less than 4. 6 kg vs at least 4. 6 kg), planned concurrent chemotherapy (yes vs no), age (less than 50 vs 50 and over), gender, planned use of megestrol or other progestational agent (yes vs no), and GBU Prognostic Index (good vs bad vs unsure). Patients are randomized to 1 of 2 treatment arms.

* Arm I: Patients receive etanercept subcutaneously (SC) twice weekly.

* Arm II: Patients receive placebo SC twice weekly. Treatment in both arms continues for a maximum of 24 weeks in the absence of disease progression or unacceptable toxicity.

Quality of life is assessed at baseline, weekly for 1 month, and then monthly during treatment.

Patients are followed every 6 months for 5 years.

PROJECTED ACCRUAL: A total of 274 patients (137 per treatment arm) will be accrued for this study within 19 months.


Minimum age: 18 Years. Gender(s): Both.



* Histologically or cytologically confirmed malignancy except brain cancer

- If the patient has multiple primaries or an unknown primary, the currently active cancer cannot be brain cancer

* Disease considered incurable with available therapies

* No clinical evidence of ascites

* Weight loss of at least 5 pounds (2. 3 kg) within the past 2 months (excluding perioperative weight loss) and/or estimated caloric intake of less than 20 cal/kg daily

* Weight gain determined by physician to be beneficial

* Patient perceives weight loss as a problem



* 18 and over

Performance status

* ECOG 0-2

Life expectancy

* More than 3 months


* Not specified


* Not specified


* Not specified


* No poorly controlled congestive heart failure

* No poorly controlled hypertension

* No pacemaker, implanted defibrillator, stents, or metal suture material in the heart or great vessels (for patients participating in the BIA translational portion of the study)


* No known mechanical obstruction of the alimentary tract

* No malabsorption

* No intractable vomiting (more than 5 episodes/week)

* Not concurrently receiving tube feedings or parenteral nutrition


* Able to reliably administer subcutaneous medication twice weekly

* Alert and mentally competent

* Not pregnant or nursing

* Negative pregnancy test

* Fertile patients must use effective contraception


Biologic therapy

* More than 1 month since prior infliximab

* No concurrent live vaccination


* Concurrent chemotherapy allowed

Endocrine therapy

* At least 1 month since prior adrenal steroids

* No concurrent adrenal steroids (inhalant, topical, or optical steroids allowed)

- Concurrent short-term dexamethasone for chemotherapy-induced emesis is allowed


* Concurrent radiotherapy allowed


* Not specified


* More than 1 month since prior etanercept

* No concurrent evaluation with another device that injects an electrical current into the body (for patients participating in the bioelectrical impendance analysis [BIA] translational portion of the study)

Locations and Contacts

MBCCOP - Gulf Coast, Mobile, Alabama 36607, United States

Mayo Clinic Scottsdale, Scottsdale, Arizona 85259, United States

Mayo Clinic - Jacksonville, Jacksonville, Florida 32224, United States

MBCCOP - Hawaii, Honolulu, Hawaii 96813, United States

CCOP - Carle Cancer Center, Urbana, Illinois 61801, United States

CCOP - Illinois Oncology Research Association, Peoria, Illinois 61615-7828, United States

CCOP - Cedar Rapids Oncology Project, Cedar Rapids, Iowa 52403-1206, United States

CCOP - Iowa Oncology Research Association, Des Moines, Iowa 50309-1854, United States

Siouxland Hematology-Oncology Associates at June E. Nylen Cancer Center, Sioux City, Iowa 51101-1733, United States

CCOP - Wichita, Wichita, Kansas 67214-3882, United States

CCOP - Michigan Cancer Research Consortium, Ann Arbor, Michigan 48106, United States

Mayo Clinic Cancer Center, Rochester, Minnesota 55905, United States

CCOP - Missouri Valley Cancer Consortium, Omaha, Nebraska 68106, United States

Cancer Care Center at Medcenter One Hospital, Bismarck, North Dakota 58501-5505, United States

CCOP - Oklahoma, Tulsa, Oklahoma 74136, United States

CCOP - Geisinger Clinic and Medical Center, Danville, Pennsylvania 17822-2001, United States

CCOP - Upstate Carolina, Spartanburg, South Carolina 29303, United States

CCOP - Sioux Community Cancer Consortium, Sioux Falls, South Dakota 57104, United States

Rapid City Regional Hospital, Rapid City, South Dakota 57709, United States

Additional Information

Clinical trial summary from the National Cancer Institute's PDQ® database

Last updated: March 5, 2007

Page last updated: August 03, 2007

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