Background: The addition of antibiotics reportedly augments the efficacy of gemcitabine (GEM) in tumor-bearing mice. However, whether this phenomenon is also observed in cancer patients remains unclear. In the present study, we aimed to assess whether antibiotics for treatment or prevention of infection augments treatment efficacies of GEM-containing regimens in patients with any type of cancer. Methods: Medical records of patients diagnosed with cancer histopathologically and treated with GEM-containing regimens (n=169) were retrospectively reviewed. Patients were assigned into two groups: antibiotics-untreated group (patients who were treated with GEM-containing regimens but without antibiotics) and antibiotics-treated group (patients who were treated with GEM-containing regimens plus antibiotics). Response rates, progression- free survival (PFS) time, and overall survival (OS) time were analyzed for each group. Results: The response rates of the antibiotics-untreated and antibiotics-treated groups with GEMcontaining regimens were 15.1% and 27.6%, respectively. Themedian PFS times of the antibioticsuntreated and antibiotics-treated groups were 2.5 (95% CI: 1.86-3.73) and 4.9 (95% CI: 3.47-6.0) months, respectively. The median OS times of the antibiotics-untreated and antibiotics-treated groups were 7.53 (95% CI: 5.63-9.57) months and 13.83 (95% CI: 10.83-16.43) months, respectively. Conclusion: The addition of antibiotics augments the treatment efficacies of GEM-containing regimens, and it may be a potential therapeutic option to improve treatment efficacies of GEM-containing regimens in patients with advanced cancer.
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