Chemotherapy vs. chemoimmunotherapy with methanol extraction residue of bacillus calmette‐guerin (MER) in advanced breast cancer: A randomized trial by the piedmont oncology association

Academic Article


  • Effects of the addition of MER, a nonspecific, nonviable immunostimulant, to two combination chemotherapy programs were explored in patients with metastatic breast cancer. Patients were randomized to either CDVFP [cyclophosphamide (C), doxorubicin (D), vincristine (V), fluorouracil (F) and prednisone (P)] or CD alternating with methotrexate (M) and F (CD/MF). Each group was also randomized to receive MER, 0.4 mg S.C. every four weeks or no immunotherapy. The response rates were CDVFP 56%, CDVFP + MER 54%, CD/MF 43%, and CD/MF + MER 43%. No significant differences were noted in response rate. Median durations of response and survival were similar for each group: CDVFP 16.2 and 25.2 months, respectively; CDVFP + MER 14.0 and 23.3 months, CD/MF 12.1 and 26.1 months, and CD/MF + MER 15.5 and 25.6 months. Patients who achieved CR frequently had soft‐tissue disease (7/17) and patients with disease in 1 or 2 metastatic sites had a significantly higher response rate than those in ≥3 sites. MER did not enhance response rate, duration of response, or survival. Also MER did not diminish myelosuppression. Copyright © 1981 American Cancer Society
  • Authors

    Published In

  • Cancer  Journal
  • Author List

  • Muss HB; Richards F; Cooper MR; White DR; Jackson DV; Stuart JJ; Howard V; Shore A; Rhyne AL; Spurr CL
  • Start Page

  • 2295
  • End Page

  • 2301
  • Volume

  • 47
  • Issue

  • 9