WE-D-BRE-04: Modeling Optimal Concurrent Chemotherapy Schedules




Concurrent chemo-radiation therapy (CCRT) has become a more common cancer treatment option with a better tumor control rate for several tumor sites, including head and neck and lung cancer. In this work, possible optimal chemotherapy schedules were investigated by implementing chemotherapy cell-kill into a tumor response model of RT.


The chemotherapy effect has been added into a published model (Jeong et al., PMB (2013) 58:4897), in which the tumor response to RT can be simulated with the effects of hypoxia and proliferation. Based on the two-compartment pharmacokinetic model, the temporal concentration of chemotherapy agent was estimated. Log cell-kill was assumed and the cell-kill constant was estimated from the observed increase in local control due to concurrent chemotherapy. For a simplified two cycle CCRT regime, several different starting times and intervals were simulated with conventional RT regime (2Gy/fx, 5fx/wk). The effectiveness of CCRT was evaluated in terms of reduction in radiation dose required for 50% of control to find the optimal chemotherapy schedule.


Assuming the typical slope of dose response curve (γ50=2), the observed 10% increase in local control rate was evaluated to be equivalent to an extra RT dose of about 4 Gy, from which the cell-kill rate of chemotherapy was derived to be about 0.35. Best response was obtained when chemotherapy was started at about 3 weeks after RT began. As the interval between two cycles decreases, the efficacy of chemotherapy increases with broader range of optimal starting times.


The effect of chemotherapy has been implemented into the resource-conservation tumor response model to investigate CCRT. The results suggest that the concurrent chemotherapy might be more effective when delayed for about 3 weeks, due to lower tumor burden and a larger fraction of proliferating cells after reoxygenation.