Efficacy of Reduced-Intensity Chemotherapy With Oxaliplatin and Capecitabine on Quality of Life and Cancer Control Among Older and Frail Patients With Advanced Gastroesophageal Cancer: The GO2 Phase 3 Randomized Clinical Trial

P.S. Hall, D. Swinson, D.A. Cairns, J.S. Waters, R. Petty, C. Allmark, S. Ruddock, S. Falk, J. Wadsley, R. Roy, T. Tillett, J. Nicoll, S. Cummins, J. Mano, S. Grumett, Z. Stokes, K. Konstantinos-Velios, A. Chatterjee, A. Garcia, T. WaddellK. Guptal, N. Maisey, M. Khan, J. Dent, S. Lord, A. Crossley, E. Katona, H. Marshall, H.I. Grabsch, G. Velikova, P.L. Ow, C. Handforth, H. Howard, M.T. Seymour*, GO2 Trial Investigators

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review


Importance: Older and/or frail patients are underrepresented in landmark cancer trials. Tailored research is needed to address this evidence gap. Objective: The GO2 randomized clinical trial sought to optimize chemotherapy dosing in older and/or frail patients with advanced gastroesophageal cancer, and explored baseline geriatric assessment (GA) as a tool for treatment decision-making. Design, Setting, and Participants: This multicenter, noninferiority, open-label randomized trial took place at oncology clinics in the United Kingdom with nurse-led geriatric health assessment. Patients were recruited for whom full-dose combination chemotherapy was considered unsuitable because of advanced age and/or frailty. Interventions: There were 2 randomizations that were performed: CHEMO-INTENSITY compared oxaliplatin/capecitabine at Level A (oxaliplatin 130 mg/m 2on day 1, capecitabine 625 mg/m 2twice daily on days 1-21, on a 21-day cycle), Level B (doses 0.8 times A), or Level C (doses 0.6 times A). Alternatively, if the patient and clinician agreed the indication for chemotherapy was uncertain, the patient could instead enter CHEMO-BSC, comparing Level C vs best supportive care. Main Outcomes and Measures: First, broad noninferiority of the lower doses vs reference (Level A) was assessed using a permissive boundary of 34 days reduction in progression-free survival (PFS) (hazard ratio, HR = 1.34), selected as acceptable by a forum of patients and clinicians. Then, the patient experience was compared using Overall Treatment Utility (OTU), which combines efficacy, toxic effects, quality of life, and patient value/acceptability. For CHEMO-BSC, the main outcome measure was overall survival. Results: A total of 514 patients entered CHEMO-INTENSITY, of whom 385 (75%) were men and 299 (58%) were severely frail, with median age 76 years. Noninferior PFS was confirmed for Levels B vs A (HR = 1.09 [95% CI, 0.89-1.32]) and C vs A (HR = 1.10 [95% CI, 0.90-1.33]). Level C produced less toxic effects and better OTU than A or B. No subgroup benefited from higher doses: Level C produced better OTU even in younger or less frail patients. A total of 45 patients entered the CHEMO-BSC randomization: overall survival was nonsignificantly longer with chemotherapy: median 6.1 vs 3.0 months (HR = 0.69 [95% CI, 0.32-1.48], P =.34). In multivariate analysis in 522 patients with all variables available, baseline frailty, quality of life, and neutrophil to lymphocyte ratio were independently associated with OTU, and can be combined in a model to estimate the probability of different outcomes. Conclusions and Relevance: This phase 3 randomized clinical trial found that reduced-intensity chemotherapy provided a better patient experience without significantly compromising cancer control and should be considered for older and/or frail patients. Baseline geriatric assessment can help predict the utility of chemotherapy but did not identify a group benefiting from higher-dose treatment. Trial Registration: isrctn.org Identifier: ISRCTN44687907.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)869-877
Number of pages9
JournalJAMA Oncology
Issue number6
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jun 2021




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