Korean J Pancreas Biliary Tract.  2022 Apr;27(2):90-96. 10.15279/kpba.2022.27.2.90.

Novel Palliative Chemotherapy for Cholangiocarcinoma

  • 1Center for Liver and Pancreatobiliary Cancer, National Cancer Center, Goyang, Korea
  • 2Research Institute, National Cancer Center, Goyang, Korea
  • 3Graduate School of Cancer Science and Policy, National Cancer Center, Goyang, Korea


The term cholangiocarcinoma (CC) refers to all tumors arising from bile duct epithelium. CCs are characterized by their rarity, difficulty in diagnosis, and overall poor prognosis. This leads to a paucity of data from which to define the natural history and optimal treatment regimens. Currently, surgical resection remains the only potentially curative treatment, but many patients develop recurrence. In addition, a limited number of patients can be candidates for curative resection at diagnosis. Therefore, chemotherapy is inevitable choice for the treatment of advanced CC. Gemcitabine plus cisplatin (GP) is considered a standard option for advanced biliary cancer. A randomized phase III trial (ABC-02 trial) showed the superiority of gemcitabine plus cisplatin over gemcitabine alone. Treatment with nab-paclitaxel plus gemcitabine-cisplatin prolonged median progression-free survival and overall survival vs. those reported for historical controls treated with gemcitabine-cisplatin alone in a phase II study of 60 patients with locally advanced unresectable or metastatic biliary tract cancer. Recent data of the ABC-06 trial has provided slight evidence for the use of second-line chemotherapy after progression on cisplatin plus gemcitabine combination. Other active regimens, that could be considered in patients who include have disease progression while receiving GP and who retain an adequate performance status, includes capecitabine plus cisplatin, liposomal irinotecan plus leucovorin-modulated fluorouracil and a fluoropyrimidine alone. We herein review recent published data regarding the use of palliative chemotherapies in CC patients, with a particular focus on novel cytotoxic agents.


담도암; 항암치료; 담도계종양; Cholangiocarcinoma; Chemotherapy; Bile duct neoplasms
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