The taxanes, paclitaxel and docetaxel, are novel antimitotic agents that are under extensive investigation in clinical trials. Both taxanes have demonstrated significant activity against many solid tumors as single agents and in combination with other chemotherapeutic agents. In addition, taxanes arrest cells at the G2/M phase of the cell cycle, which is the most radiosensitive phase. These properties are exploited in clinical trials combining this taxane with radiation therapy. Most studies included patients with non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC) and cancers of the head and neck and there are a few studies with concurrent taxane/RT in esophageal, gastric, pancreatic, brain and breast cancer. Information concerning the tolerability and possible utility of docetaxel is also becoming available. This manuscript will review some of the more prominent trials of the taxanes in combination with radiation therapy for solid tumors.
- Non small cell lung cancer
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