Pemetrexed disodium (ALIMTA) is a novel antimetabolite that inhibits at least three folate-dependent enzymes, thymidylate synthase, dihydrofolate reductase, and glycinamide ribonucleotide formyltransferase. Pemetrexed disodium is broadly active in a wide variety of solid tumours, including non-small cell lung, breast, bladder, head and neck and ovarian cancers. Gemcitabine is a broadly active pyrimidine nucleoside antimetabolite, which is approved for the treatment of pancreatic and non-small cell lung cancers. Three preclinical studies have been reported that show cytotoxic synergy between gemcitabine and pemetrexed. Clinical activity with this combination has been observed in a phase I study, with partial responses in three of five patients previously treated for non-small cell lung cancer. An international phase II study of this combination in non-small cell lung cancer is ongoing.
- Pemetrexed disodium
- Thymidylate synthase
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Pulmonary and Respiratory Medicine
- Cancer Research