Open Access Highly Accessed Research article

Phase II study of the combination carboplatin plus celecoxib in heavily pre-treated recurrent ovarian cancer patients

Francesco Legge12, Amelia Paglia1, Marco D'Asta1, Gilda Fuoco1, Giovanni Scambia12 and Gabriella Ferrandina12*

Author Affiliations

1 Gynecologic Oncology Unit, Catholic University of Campobasso, Italy

2 Gynecologic Oncology Unit, Catholic University of Rome, Italy

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BMC Cancer 2011, 11:214  doi:10.1186/1471-2407-11-214

Published: 31 May 2011



Cyclooxygenase-2 overexpression is associated with poor outcome and resistance to platinum-based chemotherapy in ovarian cancer. We evaluated the antitumor activity and safety of the combination carboplatin plus the COX-2 inhibitor celecoxib in recurrent heavily-treated OC patients.


Patients were administered oral celecoxib (400 mg/day) in combination with intravenous carboplatin (AUC5, q28). A Simon's two-stage design was employed.


45 patients were enrolled: 23 (51.1%) presented platinum-resistance, and 27 (60%) had received at least 3 prior regimens for recurrence. The response rate was 28.9% with 3 complete and 10 partial responses (median duration of response = 6 months). Only one (0.4%) G4 non-febrile neutropenia was observed; G3 neutropenia, anemia, or thrombocytopenia, were observed in 2.5%, 1.7%, and 1.7% of the cycles, respectively. G3-4 vomiting was reported in only 1.7%, and 0.4% of the cycles were associated with G3 dyspepsia or diarrhea or constipation. Only one patient experienced G3 hypertension associated to G2 hypersensitivity reaction. No differences in baseline versus post-treatment Quality of Life scores were observed. Median progression free survival and overall survival were 5 and 13 months, respectively.


Celecoxib combined with carboplatin showed promising activity and it is well tolerated in heavily-treated recurrent ovarian cancer patients.

Trial registration number

NCT01124435 ( Identifier) and 935/03 (study ID numbers).