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Lower-Dose Chemoradiation in Treating Patients with Early-Stage Anal Cancer, the DECREASE Study

This phase II trial studies how well lower-dose chemotherapy plus radiation (chemoradiation) therapy works in comparison to standard-dose chemoradiation in treating patients with early-stage anal cancer. Drugs used in chemotherapy, such as mitomycin, fluorouracil, and capecitabine, work in different ways to stop the growth of tumor cells, either by killing the cells, by stopping them from dividing, or by stopping them from spreading. Radiation therapy uses high-energy x-rays to kill tumor cells and shrink tumors. Giving chemotherapy with radiation therapy may kill more tumor cells. This study may help doctors find out if lower-dose chemoradiation is as effective and has fewer side effects than standard-dose chemoradiation, which is the usual approach for treatment of this cancer type.
Phase II
Chemotherapy - cytotoxic, Radiotherapy
5FU continuous infusion, Capecitabine, Mitomycin-C
Eng, Cathy
Vanderbilt University


18 Years
Inclusion Criteria:

Patients must be English speaking in order to participate in the quality of life studies

Patient must have histologically proven T1-2N0M0 invasive anal canal or anal margin squamous cell carcinoma with tumors measuring =
Patient must have human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) status documented at baseline. For patients without a history of HIV infection, it is recommended (but not required) that updated HIV testing be performed within one year of study enrollment

Patients who are HIV-negative must not have lymph nodes that are radiographically-concerning for cancer involvement using computed tomography (CT) and fludeoxyglucose F-18 (FDG) - positron emission tomography (PET)/CT-based criteria * Patients will be considered to be lymph node (LN) positive and thereby not eligible in this study if the lymph nodes meet any of the following criteria: ** Mesorectal, presacral, internal iliac or obturator LN with: *** Short axis measuring > 5 mm based on CT/magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) OR *** Morphologic features of irregular border or central necrosis if assessed on MRI and LN measures > 3 mm OR *** FDG uptake > blood pool (Deauville 3-5) based on FDG-PET/CT or PET/MRI ** Internal Iliac and obturator LN with: *** Short-axis measuring > 7 mm based on CT/MRI OR *** Morphologic features of irregular border or central necrosis based on CT/MRI OR *** FDG uptake > blood pool (Deauville 3-5) based on FDG-PET/CT or PET/MRI ** External Iliac and common Iliac: *** Short-axis measuring > 10 mm based on CT/MRI OR *** Morphologic features of irregular border or central necrosis based on CT/MRI OR *** FDG uptake > blood pool (Deauville 3-5) based on FDG-PET/CT or PET/MRI * Inguinal LN (superficial and deep) meeting any of the following criteria will be ineligible unless an fine needle aspiration (FNA) is performed and resulting cytology is negative. ** Morphologic features of irregular border or central necrosis based on CT/MRI ** FDG uptake > liver (Deauville 4) based on FDG-PET/CT. ** Patients who are HIV-negative and have inguinal lymph nodes that do not meet the above criteria must undergo fine needle aspiration and have negative histology to be eligible

Patients who are HIV-positive must have: * A CD4 count >= 200 * Confirmation of no lymph node involvement by central real-time review of imaging ** NOTE: Patients will be pre-registered to Arm S. Upon central confirmation of no lymph node involvement, eligible patients may proceed to randomization on Step 1 * No history of acquired immunodeficiency syndrome (AIDS)-related complications within past year other than a history of low CD4+ T-cell count (> 200/mm^3) prior to initiation of combination antiretroviral therapy * Patient must be healthy on the basis of HIV disease with high likelihood of near normal life span were it not for the anal cancer * Patient MUST receive appropriate care and treatment for HIV infection, including antiretroviral medications when clinically indicated, and should be under the care of a physician experienced in HIV management. Participants will be eligible regardless of antiretroviral medication provided the regimen has been stable for at least 4 weeks

Patient must have Eastern Cooperative Oncology Group (ECOG) - American College of Radiology Imaging Network (ACRIN) performance status of 0-2

Patient must have no history of prior radiation or chemotherapy for this malignancy

Patient must not have had prior potentially curative surgery (i.e. abdominal-perineal resection) for carcinoma of the anus

Patients with excisional biopsy procedure are eligible provided there was tumor involvement of the anal canal and/or anal verge prior to resection, or if the stage is T2N0 based on tumor size before the procedure

Patient must not be receiving any other standard anti-cancer therapy or experimental agent concurrently with the study drugs

Patient must not have intercurrent illness including, but not limited to, ongoing or active infection or psychiatric/social situations that, in the judgement of the investigator, would limit compliance with study requirements

Patient must not have had significant cardiovascular disease including myocardial infarction, unstable angina, stroke, transient ischemic attack, symptomatic coronary artery disease, symptomatic congestive heart failure, or uncontrolled cardiac arrhythmia within 6 months of randomization

Patient must not have a history of a different malignancy unless they have been disease-free for at least 2 years and are deemed by the investigator to be at low risk of recurrence * Individuals with the following cancers are eligible if diagnosed and treated within the past 5 years: cervical cancer in situ and basal cell or squamous cell carcinoma of the skin

Patient must not have active autoimmune or connective disease

Patients who are on anti-coagulation with warfarin within 2 weeks prior to registration and are considering the use of capecitabine, must use an alternative anti-coagulant * NOTE: Low molecular weight heparin is permitted provided the patient’s prothrombin time (PT)/international normalized ratio (INR) is
Patients who will receive capecitabine and are on Dilantin for a seizure disorder must have Dilantin levels checked weekly

Hemoglobin > 10 g/dL (within 2 weeks prior to registration)

Platelets >= 100,000/mm^3 (within 2 weeks prior to registration)

Absolute neutrophil count >= 1500/mm^3 (within 2 weeks prior to registration)

Serum creatinine must be 50 ml/min (within 2 weeks prior to registration)

Total bilirubin must be
Aspartate aminotransferase (AST)/alanine aminotransferase (ALT) =
Albumin >= 3.0 g/dL (within 2 weeks prior to registration)

Women must not be pregnant or breast-feeding because the study treatment administered may cause harm to an unborn fetus or breastfeeding child. All females of childbearing potential must have a blood test or urine study within 2 weeks prior to registration to rule out pregnancy. A female of childbearing potential is any woman, regardless of sexual orientation or whether they have undergone tubal ligation, who meets the following criteria: 1) has achieved menarche at some point, 2) has not undergone a hysterectomy or bilateral oophorectomy; or 2) has not been naturally postmenopausal (amenorrhea following cancer therapy does not rule out childbearing potential) for at least 24 consecutive months (i.e., has had menses at any time in the preceding 24 consecutive months)

Women of childbearing potential and sexually active males must be strongly advised to use accepted and effective method(s) of contraception or to abstain from sexual intercourse for the duration of their participation in the study and for at least 6 months after the completion of treatment

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