E Ferrari

University of Naples Federico II, Napoli, Campania, Italy

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Publications (14)59.76 Total impact

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    ABSTRACT: Docetaxel (DTX) and zoledronic acid (ZOL) are effective in patients with hormone resistant prostate cancer (HRPC) with bone metastases. A phase I clinical trial of metronomic administration of Zoledronic Acid AN d TaxoterE combination (ZANTE trial) in 2 different sequences was conducted in HRPC. The maximum tolerated dose was not achieved with sequence A. Two patients at third level of sequence B developed dose limiting toxicity. A disease control was obtained in six out of nine patients treated with sequence A, where a decrease of biological markers and PSA were also observed. No evidence of anti-tumor activity was observed in patients treated with sequence B. Twenty-two patients enrolled into the study (median age: 73 years; range: 43-80) received one of three escalated doses of DTX (30, 40 and 50 mg/m(2)) in combination with a fixed dose of ZOL (2 mg), both administered every 14 days in two different sequences: DTX at the day 1 followed by ZOL at the day 2 (sequence A) or the reverse (sequence B). Patients were evaluated for adverse events and serum IL-8, MMP-2 and MMP-9 were evaluated prior and after therapy with the two sequences of administration of DTX and ZOL. The bi-weekly combination of DTX (50 mg/m(2)) followed by ZOL was feasible and show promising anti-tumor activity.
    Cancer biology & therapy 09/2010; 10(6):543-8. · 3.29 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Doxorubicin and ifosfamide are the two most active drugs in the treatment of patients with advanced, soft tissue sarcoma (STS) of most histologic subtypes, aside from gastrointestinal stromal tumor (GIST). However, after failure of these drugs, alone or in combination, patients with advanced STS have few therapeutic options and the search for new active drugs is well worth pursuing. ET-743, a DNA minor groove binder, which blocks cell cycle progression in G2/M phase through a p53-independent apoptotic process, represents the most promising among novel compounds in STS, since recently completed phase II trials have consistently shown high survival, in spite of the relatively low incidence of major objective responses. The potential for combination with other active compounds further increases the appeal of ET-743. Imatinib mesylate is being tested also in STS other than GIST, which can overexpress one or more of the tyrosine kinases inhibited by imatinib; however, negative data have recently been presented. Clinical studies with a number of other compounds are ongoing or planned. However, investigators involved in the management of patients with advanced STS are to be increasingly aware of the emergence of new molecular targets and genetic profiles in different histologic subtypes, according to which treatment strategies should be adapted.
    Critical Reviews in Oncology/Hematology 08/2006; 59(1):74-84. · 4.64 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: The present study was conducted to evaluate activity and toxicity of the FLEC (folinic acid 100 mg/m2; 5-fluorouracil 1000 mg/m2; carboplatin 300 mg/m2; epirubicin 60 mg/m2) schedule as second-line treatment for progressive locally advanced or metastatic pancreatic cancer (LAMPC). FLEC was administered every 3 weeks with an angiographic catheter introduced into the tumor vascular bed. Thirty-two patients were enrolled. Twenty patients had a PS of 2. Twenty-five patients had metastatic disease to liver. Seven (21.9%) partial responses were observed (WHO criteria). Fifteen patients (46.9%) had stable disease and ten patients (31.2%) had progressive disease. The median OS from the diagnosis was 11.8 months. PS (p=0.0308) and pain (WHO scale, p=0.0222; analogic scale, p=0.0446) significantly improved after therapy. No patient discontinued treatment because of toxicity (NCI-CTC criteria). The current study shows that intraarterial chemotherapy is a good therapeutic option in second-line treatment of LAMPC.
    Frontiers in Bioscience 02/2006; 11:782-7. · 3.29 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Hormonal therapy is the preferred systemic treatment for recurrent or metastatic, post-menopausal hormone-receptor-positive breast cancer. Previous studies have shown that there is no cross-resistance between exemestane and reversible aromatase inhibitors. Exposure to hormonal therapy does not hamper later response to chemotherapy. Patients with locally advanced or metastatic, hormonal receptor positive or unknown, breast cancer were treated with oral anastrozole, until disease progression, followed by oral exemestane until new evidence of disease progression. The primary end point of the study was clinical benefit, defined as the sum of complete responses (CR), partial responses (PR) and > 24 weeks stable disease (SD). In all, 100 patients were enrolled in the study. Anastrozole produced eight CR and 19 PR for an overall response rate of 27% (95% CI: 18.6-36.8%). An additional 46 patients had long-term (> 24 weeks) SD for an overall clinical benefit of 73% (95% CI: 63.2-81.4). Median time to progression (TTP) was 11 months (95% CI: 10-12). A total of 50 patients were evaluated for the second-line treatment: exemestane produced one CR and three PR; 25 patients had SD which lasted > or = 6 months in 18 patients. Median TTP was 5 months. Toxicity of treatment was low. Our study confirms that treatment with sequential hormonal agents can extend the period of time during which endocrine therapy can be used, thereby deferring the decision to use chemotherapy.
    British Journal of Cancer 06/2005; 92(9):1621-5. · 5.08 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: The aim of this study was to determine the maximum tolerated dose (MTD) of liposomal doxorubicin (LD)-vinorelbine (V) in patients with refractory or resistant ovarian cancer. Thirty patients were eligible. Seven levels were studied [LD 25-V20 (three patients enrolled); LD 30-V20 (three); LD 35-V20 (three); LD 20-V25 (three); LD 25-V25 (three); LD 30-V25 (10); LD 35-V25 (five)]. LD was given on day 1, while V was given on days 1 and 8 every 21 days. Cohorts of three patients were enrolled at each level, and another three patients were planned, if one dose-limiting toxicity (DLT) was registered. DLT was observed in four patients: two febrile neutropenia, one grade 4 thrombocytopenia and one grade 3 palmar-plantar erythrodysesthesia (PPE) at level 7 (LD 35-V25). Thus, liposomal doxorubicin 30 mg/m(2) plus vinorelbine 25 mg/m(2) was the MTD. The most frequent toxicity was neutropenia. Fifteen patients (50%) experienced grade 3 neutropenia and 10 (33.3%) grade 4 neutropenia. Non-hematological toxicity was mild. Mucositis and PPE were the most frequent toxicities, but in most cases were grade 1. Out of 29 assessable patients, six (20.7%; 95% confidence interval 10%-39%) experienced an objective response, with one complete response. In patients with refractory or resistant ovarian cancer, the recommended doses for the combination studied are liposomal doxorubicin 30 mg/m(2) (day 1) plus vinorelbine 25 mg/m(2) (day 1 and 8). Neutropenia is the most frequent toxicity, while non-hematological toxicity is mild. Substantial activity was recorded and a phase II study is justified.
    Annals of Oncology 10/2003; 14(9):1406-11. · 7.38 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Cisplatin and paclitaxel are active in cervical cancer and both are able to potentiate the effects of radiotherapy. In this study we evaluated the maximum-tolerated dose (MTD) of paclitaxel in combination with a fixed dose of cisplatin when given weekly concurrently with pelvic radiotherapy to patients with carcinoma of the cervix uteri. Eighteen patients with cervical cancer were enrolled in this study. Cisplatin (30 mg/m2) and paclitaxel (starting dose 40 mg/m2; 5 mg/m2 escalation per level) were given on day 1 of radiotherapy and then weekly for six times. Radiotherapy was given to the pelvis with a four-field box technique for five days each week. Patients received 65 Gy in 1.8 Gy fractions. Cohorts of three patients were enrolled at each level and three further patients were included if one or two dose-limiting severe adverse events (SAE) were recorded. SAE was defined as grade 3 or 4 nonhematologic toxicity, excluding nausea or vomiting and alopecia, grade 4 neutropenia or thrombocytopenia, and prolonged (> 1 week) neutropenia or thrombocytopenia. Four levels were studied (paclitaxel 40, 45, 50, 55 mg/m2) with three, five, four and six patients enrolled, respectively. The MTD of paclitaxel was found at 50 mg/m2/wk and cisplatin 30 mg/m2/wk. Diarrhea was the dose-limiting toxicity. Thirteen patients were evaluable for response: seven complete and five partial responses were obtained with an overall response rate of 92.3%. The MTD of paclitaxel is 50 mg/m2/wk when associated to cisplatin 30 mg/m2/wk and concurrent pelvic radiotherapy. Diarrhea is the dose limiting side effect. Preliminary data suggest that concurrent chemoradiotherapy with paclitaxel and cisplatin could be a very active treatment for patients with locally advanced carcinoma of the cervix.
    Annals of Oncology 05/2000; 11(4):455-9. · 7.38 Impact Factor
  • International Journal of Gynecology & Obstetrics 01/2000; 70. · 1.84 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Prognosis of advanced ovarian cancer is unsatisfactory. Chemotherapy can be intensified combining active drugs at their highest possible doses. In this phase I/II trial, 77 untreated patients received escalating doses of paclitaxel (135, 155, 175, 195 and 215 mg/m2, infused over 3 hours) with carboplatin (AUC 3.6) and cisplatin (60 mg/m2). Nine, 16, 13, 8 and 3 patients were treated at the five levels, respectively. A further 28 patients were treated at the maximum tolerable dose (MTD). Dose-limiting toxicities (one WHO grade 3 constipation, one grade 2 prolonged peripheral neurotoxicity and one grade 3 cardiac toxicity) occurred at 215 mg/m2 in 3 out of 3 patients. MTD was reached at level 4 paclitaxel dose (195 mg/m2). Response was evaluated in 62 patients. A complete response was achieved in 23 patients (37.1%-95% CI 25.2-50.3), including 16 (25.8%) pathological and partial response in 28 (45.2%), for an overall response rate of 82.3% (95% exact CL: 70.5%-90.8%). The probability of response was affected by the degree of initial debulking (p = 0.002) and not by the paclitaxel dose. In patients with stage III-IV disease, median progression-free survival was 17 months (95% CI 14-25). After a median follow-up of 28 months, median survival had not been reached; 2-year estimated survival was 67%. Paclitaxel can be safely given at the dose of 195 mg/m2 in combination with carboplatin (AUC 3.6) and cisplatin (60 mg/m2). This combination is active and safe and could be considered in clinical settings requiring intensive short treatment.
    Anticancer research 01/2000; 20(5C):4023-9. · 1.71 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: To evaluate the activity and toxicity of the combination of cisplatin (80 mg/m2 day 1) and vinorelbine (25 mg/m2 days 1 and 8) in patients with carcinoma of the uterine cervix that has not been previously treated with chemotherapy. Fifty patients with cervical cancer were enrolled onto this study (27 stage IB-III, 23 stage IVB-recurrent). A two-stage optimal Simon design was applied. Thirteen responders of 29 treated patients were required to proceed beyond the first stage, and 28 responders were needed overall. Hematologic toxicity was mild, with neutropenia being the most frequent side effect. Nonhematologic toxicity was frequent but never severe; one patient had grade 3 peripheral neurotoxicity. Objective responses were recorded for 32 patients (64%): 11 patients (22%) achieved a complete response (CR) and 21 patients (42%) achieved a partial response (PR). The response rate was 81.5% in patients with IB-III stage (25.9% CR rate) and 43.5% in patients with IVB-recurrent disease (17.4% CR rate). Responses were seen both in stage IVB patients (one CR and two PRs, for an overall rate of 37.5%) and in patients with recurrent disease (three CRs + four PRs, for an overall rate of 46.7%). The combination of cisplatin and vinorelbine is an active regimen in the treatment of patients with early-stage and advanced carcinoma of the uterine cervix. The hematologic and nonhematologic toxicity of this combination is mild.
    Journal of Clinical Oncology 04/1999; 17(3):756-60. · 18.04 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: The aim of the study was to determine the maximum tolerated dose (MTD) of epirubicin combined with a fixed dose of paclitaxel, without and with support of filgrastim, in patients with platinum resistant or refractory ovarian cancer. Paclitaxel (150 mg/m2) and epirubicin (starting dose 90 mg/m2, 15 mg/m2 escalation per level) were given on day 1, every 28 days for 4-6 cycles. Filgrastim (F) (5 microg/kg/die) was given in case of grade 4 leukopenia (levels without support) or from day 4 up to leukocyte count >10,000/mm3 after nadir (levels with support). Cohorts of 3 patients were enrolled at each level and further 3 patients were planned if 1 or 2 unacceptable toxic events (UTE) were registered. MTD was determined first without and then with filgrastim. Four levels were studied (90, 90+F, 105+F, 120+F) with 4, 6, 5 and 4 patients enrolled, respectively. UTE (grade 4 neutropenia) were observed in 3 patients at level 1. Thus, 90 mg/m2 was the MTD for epirubicin without filgrastim. MTD of epirubicin with filgrastim was not reached at 120 mg/m2. Hematological toxicity was mild. Grade 3 mucositis was reported in 1 patient. Among the 14 patients with measurable or evaluable disease, 3 objective responses were observed (1 complete and 2 partial) for an overall response rate of 21.4%. The combination of paclitaxel 150 mg/m2 and epirubicin at 120 mg/m2 with filgrastim is a feasible therapy. Grade 4 leukopenia is the dose limiting toxicity using epirubicin at 90 mg/m2 without filgrastim.
    Oncology 01/1999; 56(4):267-73. · 2.17 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Cisplatin and carboplatin are both active in ovarian cancer with different toxicity profiles; thus, dose intensification may be possible by combining them. The aim of the present study was to determine the maximum tolerated dose of carboplatin combined with fixed doses of cisplatin and cyclophosphamide without and with support of lenograstim. Cisplatin (60 mg/m(2)), cyclophosphamide (600 mg/m(2)) and carboplatin (starting dose 200 mg/m(2)) were given on day 1 every 3 weeks for 4 cycles. Escalated dose levels for carboplatin were planned by increments of 50 mg/m(2) per level. Lenograstim (L) (150 mu g/m(2)/day subcutaneously) was given in case of grade 4 leukopenia (levels without support) or from day 5 up to leukocyte >10,000/mm(3) after nadir (levels with support). Four levels were studied (200, 250, 250 + lenograstim, 300 + lenograstim) with 7, 7, 8, and 7 patients enrolled, respectively. Unacceptable toxicity was induced in 1 patient at the level I (grade 4 thrombocytopenia), in 4 patients at the level 2 (2 prolonged grade 2 leukopenia, 1 grade 4 leukopenia with concomitant grade 4 thrombocytopenia and 1 grade 4 thrombocytopenia), in 1 patient at the level 2 + L (grade 4 thrombocytopenia) and in 3 patients at the level 3 + L (3 grade 4 thrombocytopenia). Thus, 200 mg/m(2) and 250 mg/m(2) were defined as carboplatin MTDs without and with lenograstim support, respectively. Median total platinum (cisplatin + 1/4 carboplatin) delivered dose-intensities were 33, 32, 38 and 44 mg/m(2)/week at the four levels, respectively. Hematological toxicity was overall mild. In no case was febrile neutropenia recorded. Grade 4 thrombocytopenia was always transient and never symptomatic. Grade 3 vomiting was the only severe non-hematological toxicity reported in 5 patients. Out of 16 patients with measurable disease, 11 objective responses were obtained (5 complete and 6 partial) for an overall response rate of 69% (95% exact CL 41-89%). Recommended dose of carboplatin is 200 mg/m(2) without and 250 mg/m(2) with support of lenograstim when combined with cisplatin 60 mg/m(2) and cyclophosphamide 600 mg/m(2). Dose limiting toxicity is persistent leukopenia without and grade 4 thrombocytopenia with support of lenograstim.
    International Journal of Oncology 07/1997; 11(1):175-80. · 2.66 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Twenty-five patients with Stage III ovarian cancer were entered into a trial with intraperitoneal combinations of carboplatin (400 mg/cqm) and recombinant interferon alfa (50 MU). All patients had received prior intravenous platinum-based chemotherapy and underwent 2nd look laparotomy at study entry. Our study indicates that this combination chemotherapy is safely administered by the intraperitoneal route. Myelotoxicity was frequent, but rarely of grade 3. No major local toxicity was recorded by accessing the peritoneal cavity with a temporary catheter. The response to treatment was promising in the group of patients with less then 2 cm residual disease at study entry (15 patients); in this group, all patients had no clinical evidence of disease at the completion of the therapy. In 2 cases reexploration was performed and pCR was recorded. Only one patient of this group relapsed during a mean follow-up of 21 months. Two pCRS were also recorded in the group of patients with more than 2 cm at 2nd look (9 patients), although relapse occurred after 9 and 15 months respectively. In the remaining patients of this group, persistence of disease was observed after intraperitoneal chemotherapy.
    European journal of gynaecological oncology 02/1994; 15(6):437-42. · 0.58 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Mucinous ovarian carcinoma has a poorer prognosis compared with other histological subtypes. The aim of this study was to evaluate, retrospectively, the activity of first-line and second-line chemotherapy in patients with mucinous ovarian cancer in a mono-institutional series. In the period under survey (1996-2003), 225 new patients with ovarian cancer were treated. Twenty-one out of these patients (9.3%) received a diagnosis of mucinous ovarian cancer. The median age, performance status, stage at diagnosis and residual disease after surgery were similar in the mucinous compared to the other histological groups (P=NS). In mucinous ovarian cancer the grading of the tumors was 2 in 76% of the cases, while grade 3 was more frequent in the other subtypes (p<0.002). Eighty-five % of the patients had received carboplatin/paclitaxel, while the remaining cases had been treated with a cisplatin-based chemotherapy not containing paclitaxel. Two patients with early stage were treated with adjuvant chemotherapy and were not evaluable for response while 19 patients had measurable disease (12 pts) or were assessed at second-look (7 pts). Forty-seven % of the 19 patients experienced disease progression during first-line, while 31.5% and 10.5% complete and partial responses were recorded, respectively. Fifteen out of the 21 patients had progressed at the time of the analyses. Sixty % of the progressed patients were platinum-refractory, 3 cases were platinum-sensitive and 3 platinum-resistant. The 3 platinum-sensitive patients were treated with single agent carboplatin without any response. No response was recorded with topotecan or liposomal doxorubicin when given as second- or third-line treatment in platinum-refractory/resistant patients. Mucinous ovarian cancer has a poor response to chemotherapy both in the first-line and in the recurrence settings. Studies with alternative chemotherapy combinations are mandatory in this histological subgroup.
    Anticancer research 25(5):3501-5. · 1.71 Impact Factor
  • Bulletin du Cancer/Radioth√©rapie. 83(4):388.