Epidermal growth factor receptor-targeted therapy in locally advanced or metastatic squamous cell carcinoma of the penis

Bradley C. Carthon, Chaan S. Ng, Curtis A. Pettaway, Lance C. Pagliaro

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

58 Scopus citations


Objective To evaluate the safety and efficacy of epidermal growth factor receptor (EGFR)-targeted therapy in patients with advanced penile or scrotal cancer. Patients and Methods We retrospectively reviewed the charts of patients with penile or scrotal squamous cell carcinoma who had visited our tertiary cancer centre between 2002 and 2009, including their subsequent treatment and follow-up. We collected details of EGFR-targeted therapy and clinical outcomes. Treatment-associated time-to-disease-progression (TTP), overall survival (OS), responses to therapy and toxicity were evaluated. Results A total of 24 patients had received EGFR-targeted therapies, including cetuximab, erlotinib and gefitinib. The most common treatment given (to 67% of patients) was cetuximab combined with one or more cytotoxic drugs. The most common adverse effect was skin rash (71%). The median (range) TTP and OS were 11.3 (1-40) and 29.6 (2-205) weeks, respectively. The OS time for patients with visceral or bone metastases was significantly shorter than it was for those without (24.7 vs 49.9 weeks, P = 0.013). Among 17 patients treated with cetuximab alone or in combination with cisplatin, there were four partial responses (23.5%) including two patients with apparently chemotherapy-resistant tumours. Conclusions Our results suggest that cetuximab has antitumour activity in metastatic penile cancer, and may enhance the effect of cisplatin-based chemotherapy. Prospective studies of EGFR-targeted therapies in men with these tumours are warranted.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)871-877
Number of pages7
JournalBJU international
Issue number6
StatePublished - Jun 2014


  • anti-epidermal growth factor monoclonal antibody
  • penile neoplasms
  • squamous cell carcinoma
  • survival

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Urology


Dive into the research topics of 'Epidermal growth factor receptor-targeted therapy in locally advanced or metastatic squamous cell carcinoma of the penis'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this