Cetuximab in combination with 5-fluorouracil, leucovorin and irinotecan as a neoadjuvant chemotherapy in patients with initially unresectable colorectal liver metastases

Byung Soh Min, Nam Kyu Kim, Jung Bai Ahn, Jae Kyung Roh, Kyung Sik Kim, Jin Sub Choi, Seung Hwan Cha, Hogeun Kim

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

39 Citations (Scopus)


Background: The efficacy and safety of a combination of cetuximab, irinotecan, and 5-fluorouracil/leucovorin (FOLFIRI) in downsizing unresectable colorectal liver metastases was investigated. Patients and Methods: Patients with unresectable colorectal liver metastases with or without resectable extrahepatic metastasis were enrolled. 23 patients initially received 400 mg/m2 of cetuximab, followed by a weekly infusion of 250 mg/m2 and a biweekly dose of irinotecan (180 mg/m2), with 5-fluorouracil both by bolus (400 mg/m2) and by a 46-h infusion (total of 2,400 mg/m2) with leucovorin (400 mg/m2). Results: The overall response rate was 39.1% (n = 9; 95% confidence interval (CI): 17.6-60.7%). The most common grade 3-4 toxicities were skin reactions (30.4%) and diarrhea (26.1%). The rate of conversion to resectable liver metastases was 30.4% (n = 7; 95% CI: 10.1-50.8%). The factors found to be significantly associated with R0 resection were lower serum carcinoembryonic antigen levels after chemotherapy (p = 0.039), being chemonaive (p = 0.002), and showing a higher incidence of grade 3-4 skin toxicity (p = 0.011). Conclusions: Cetuximab with FOLFIRI may be an effective and safe treatment option for downsizing unresectable colorectal liver metastases.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)637-643
Number of pages7
Issue number12
Publication statusPublished - 2007 Nov 1


All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Hematology
  • Oncology
  • Cancer Research

Cite this