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April 7, 2004

Predictors of Clinical Response of Non–Small Cell Cancer to Gefitinib—Reply

Author Affiliations

Letters Section Editor: Stephen J. Lurie, MD, PhD, Senior Editor.

JAMA. 2004;291(13):1563. doi:10.1001/jama.291.13.1563-b

In Reply: In response to Drs Ardizzoni and Tiseo, we documented disease progression or treatment intolerability as the reason for discontinuation of prior therapy in all patients. However, we did not measure best overall response to chemotherapy given prior to enrollment. Therefore, we do not know if response to prior chemotherapy predicts sensitivity to gefitinib. However, we recorded the time from cancer diagnosis to the start of gefitinib therapy. For the 194 patients with no radiographic response, the median time from diagnosis to starting gefitinib was 19.8 months compared with 18.6 months for the 22 patients who had a radiographic response while receiving gefitinib. These data suggest that at least in terms of time from diagnosis, the natural history of non–small cell lung cancer in gefitinib-sensitive and gefitinib-resistant patients was comparable in our study.

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