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Enteral Administration of TKIs: Report of a Response to Ceritinib in an ALK-positive NSCLC Patient and Literature Review

[ Vol. 19 , Issue. 14 ]


Francesco Facchinetti, Paola Bordi*, Paola Bini, Livia Bidin, Roberta Camisa and Marcello Tiseo   Pages 1649 - 1656 ( 8 )


Introduction: Several reports attest the feasibility and the favorable outcomes of kinase inhibitors administration through feeding tubes or Percutaneous Endoscopic Gastrostomies (PEG), mainly in Non-Small Cell Lung Cancer (NSCLC) patients exposed to first-generation compounds. Here we present the case of an ALK-positive NSCLC patient who achieved cerebral and extra-cranial disease response with ceritinib (a novel ALK inhibitor) administered through a Nasogastric Tube (NGT). We moreover provide a review gathering clinical successes obtained with targeted agents intake through NGT or PEG.

Case Presentation: A 53-year-old never-smoker woman was diagnosed with ALK-rearranged stage IV lung adenocarcinoma. After a brilliant response to crizotinib and several lines of systemic therapy, NGT positioning intended for ceritinib administration was required, given the development of a pleuro-esophageal fistula. Enteral drug administration allowed a significant reduction of hepatic and cerebral disease localizations.

Literature review and discussion: The majority of kinase inhibitors administration through NGT or PEG accounts for EGFR-mutated (seven) or ALK-positive (seven, including our report) NSCLC patients. Five additional cases concerning different malignancies were described. Enteral drug administration was mostly required by disease-related respiratory impairment, requiring mechanical ventilation in the emergency setting. In our case, the cerebral and extra-cranial response obtained with enteral ceritinib intake suggests the proposition of novel inhibitors in these circumstances may take place after first-generation compounds failure or even upfront. Indeed, their grater potency and activity against brain metastases point out the role of their enteral administration in the first-line setting too, when a rapid systemic and intra-cerebral disease response is required.


Non-small cell lung cancer, ALK rearrangement, ceritinib, kinase inhibitors, enteral administration, naso-gastric tube.


Medical Oncology Unit, University Hospital of Parma, Parma, Medical Oncology Unit, University Hospital of Parma, Parma, Radiology Unit, University Hospital of Parma, Parma, Medical Oncology Unit, Piacenza Hospital, Piacenza, Medical Oncology Unit, University Hospital of Parma, Parma, Medical Oncology Unit, University Hospital of Parma, Parma

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