National Comprehensive Cancer Network

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New Treatment Options Featured in NCCN Non-Small Cell Lung Cancer Clinical Practice Guidelines

JENKINTOWN, PA, March 8, 2004 – The National Comprehensive Cancer Network (NCCN), an alliance of nineteen of the world’s leading cancer centers, announces a major update of the NCCN Non-Small Cell Lung Cancer Clinical Practice Guidelines. In a significant addition to be presented on March 11 at the NCCN 9th Annual Conference: Clinical Practice Guidelines & Outcomes Data in Oncology™, the recently approved targeted therapy, gefitinib (Iressa®, AstraZeneca Pharmaceuticals LP) is now recommended as third-line therapy and as second-line only if the platinum/docetaxel combination was used as first-line therapy.

The NCCN’s Non-Small Cell Lung Cancer guidelines panel has added more detail to its recommendations for administration of chemotherapy to patients with this disease including patient selection criteria and definition of first-, second-, and third-line agents and combinations. Chemotherapeutic agents are specified as two-agent regimens for first-line therapy, two agent regimens or single agents for second-line therapy, and one single agent for third-line therapy. Agents used in first- and second-line therapy are: cisplatin (Platinol®, Bristol-Myers Squibb Company), carboplatin (Paraplatin®, Bristol-Myers Squibb Company), paclitaxel (Taxol®, Bristol-Myers Squibb Company), docetaxel (Taxotere®, Aventis Pharmaceuticals Inc.), vinorelbine (Navelbine®, GlaxoSmithKline), gemcitabine (Gemzar®, Eli Lilly and Company), etoposide (Toposar™, Pfizer, Inc.; VePesid®, Bristol-Myers Squibb Company; Etopophos®, Bristol-Myers Squibb Company), irinotecan (Camptosar®, Pfizer, Inc.), vinblastine (Velban®, Eli Lilly and Company), mitomycin (Mutamycin®, Bristol-Myers Squibb Company), and ifosfamide (Ifex®, Bristol-Myers Squibb Company).

“NCCN Clinical Practice Guidelines in Oncology are widely recognized as the standard for clinical policy in oncology. Additionally, managed care companies are using them increasingly to help establish coverage policy, ” said William T. McGivney, PhD, Chief Executive Officer of NCCN. “As such, the NCCN recognizes its responsibility to provide up-to-date information to inform decision-making. Thus, the NCCN Guidelines process is an ongoing, continual process.”

NCCN Clinical Practice Guidelines in Oncology are available free of charge on CD-ROM. These can be ordered from NCCN by calling 215-690-0300. The guidelines can also be found at

About the National Comprehensive Cancer Network

The National Comprehensive Cancer Network® (NCCN®), a not-for-profit alliance of 27 leading cancer centers, is dedicated to improving the quality and effectiveness of care provided to patients with cancer. Through the leadership and expertise of clinical professionals at NCCN Member Institutions, NCCN develops resources that present valuable information to the numerous stakeholders in the health care delivery system. As the arbiter of high-quality cancer care, NCCN promotes the importance of continuous quality improvement and recognizes the significance of creating clinical practice guidelines appropriate for use by patients, clinicians, and other health care decision-makers. The primary goal of all NCCN initiatives is to improve the quality, effectiveness, and efficiency of oncology practice so patients can live better lives. For more information, visit

The NCCN Member Institutions are:

  • Fred & Pamela Buffett Cancer Center
  • Case Comprehensive Cancer Center/University Hospitals Seidman Cancer Center and Cleveland Clinic Taussig Cancer Institute
  • City of Hope Comprehensive Cancer Center
  • Dana-Farber/Brigham and Women's Cancer Center | Massachusetts General Hospital Cancer Center
  • Duke Cancer Institute
  • Fox Chase Cancer Center
  • Huntsman Cancer Institute at the University of Utah
  • Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center/Seattle Cancer Care Alliance
  • The Sidney Kimmel Comprehensive Cancer Center at Johns Hopkins
  • Robert H. Lurie Comprehensive Cancer Center of Northwestern University
  • Mayo Clinic Cancer Center
  • Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center
  • Moffitt Cancer Center
  • The Ohio State University Comprehensive Cancer Center - James Cancer Hospital and Solove Research Institute
  • Roswell Park Cancer Institute
  • Siteman Cancer Center at Barnes-Jewish Hospital and Washington University School of Medicine
  • St. Jude Children's Research Hospital/The University of Tennessee Health Science Center
  • Stanford Cancer Institute
  • University of Alabama at Birmingham Comprehensive Cancer Center
  • UC San Diego Moores Cancer Center
  • UCSF Helen Diller Family Comprehensive Cancer Center
  • University of Colorado Cancer Center
  • University of Michigan Comprehensive Cancer Center
  • The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center
  • University of Wisconsin Carbone Cancer Center
  • Vanderbilt-Ingram Cancer Center
  • Yale Cancer Center/Smilow Cancer Hospital