Purpose: The availability of immune checkpoint inhibitors has deeply changed the therapeutic scenario of patients with advanced non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC). Up until now, chemotherapy still represents the first-line treatment for patients with advanced NSCLC not harbouring genetic mutations or lacking high expression of programmed death ligand even if the addition of immunotherapy to first-line chemotherapy has recently been shown to improve clinical outcome. We carried out a multi-institutional retrospective analysis on third-line chemotherapy with metronomic oral vinorelbine (VNR) in a series of patients with metastatic NSCLC pre-treated with first-line chemotherapy and second-line immunotherapy.
Patients and methods: Thirty patients with metastatic NSCLC with progressive disease after first-line chemotherapy and subsequent immunotherapy were treated with metronomic oral VNR continuously at the fixed dose of 30 mg three times per week.
Results: A partial response was achieved in 4 patients (13.3%), while 10 patients (33.3%) displayed disease stabilisation for an overall disease control rate of 46.7%. Median progression-free survival was 3.9 months (range 1–13 months) and median OS reached 8.1 months (range 4.0–24.0 months) with a 12-month survival rate of 22%.
Conclusion: Oral metronomic VNR appears to be active and safe in patients with metastatic NSCLC in progression after first-line chemotherapy and second-line immunotherapy. The results reported, although from a limited sample, may suggest its use for long-term stabilisation of the disease with good patient compliance.