Vinorelbine (Page 4 of 5)


12.1 Mechanism of Action

Vinorelbine is a vinca alkaloid that interferes with microtubule assembly. The antitumor activity of vinorelbine is thought to be due primarily to inhibition of mitosis at metaphase through its interaction with tubulin. Vinorelbine may also interfere with: 1) amino acid, cyclic AMP and glutathione metabolism, 2) calmodulin-dependent Ca++-transport ATPase activity, 3) cellular respiration, and 4) nucleic acid and lipid biosynthesis. Vinorelbine inhibited mitotic microtubule formation in intact mouse embryo tectal plates at a concentration of 2 μM inducing a blockade of cells at metaphase, but produced depolymerization of axonal microtubules at a concentration 40 μM, suggesting a modest selectivity of vinorelbine for mitotic microtubules.

12.3 Pharmacokinetics

The pharmacokinetics of vinorelbine were studied in 49 patients who received doses of 30 mg/m2 administered as 15- to 20-minute constant-rate infusions. Vinorelbine concentrations in plasma decay in a triphasic manner.


Steady-state volume of distribution (VSS ) values range from 25.4 to 40.1 L/kg. Vinorelbine demonstrated high binding to human platelets and lymphocytes. The free fraction was approximately 0.11 in human plasma over a concentration range of 234 to 1169 ng/mL. The binding to plasma constituents in cancer patients ranged from 79.6% to 91.2%. Vinorelbine binding was not altered in the presence of cisplatin, fluorouracil, or doxorubicin.


The terminal phase half-life averages 27.7 to 43.6 hours and the mean plasma clearance ranges from 0.97 to 1.26 L/hr/kg.


Vinorelbine undergoes substantial hepatic elimination in humans, with large amounts recovered in feces. Two metabolites of vinorelbine have been identified in human blood, plasma and urine; vinorelbine N-oxide and deacetylvinorelbine. Deacetylvinorelbine has been demonstrated to be the primary metabolite of vinorelbine in humans and has been shown to possess antitumor activity similar to vinorelbine. Therapeutic doses of vinorelbine (30 mg/m2) yield very small, if any, quantifiable levels of either metabolite in blood or urine. The metabolism of vinorelbine is mediated by hepatic CYP3A.


After intravenous administration of radioactive vinorelbine, approximately 18% and 46% of administered radioactivity was recovered in urine and feces, respectively. In a different study, 10.9% ± 0.7% of a 30 mg/m2 intravenous dose was excreted as parent drug in urine.

Specific Populations

Age has no effect on the pharmacokinetics (CL, VSS and t1/2 ) of vinorelbine.

Drug Interaction Studies

The pharmacokinetics of vinorelbine are not influenced by the concurrent administration of cisplatin.


13.1 Carcinogenesis, Mutagenesis, Impairment of Fertility

The carcinogenic potential of vinorelbine has not been studied. Vinorelbine has been shown to affect chromosome number and possibly structure in vivo (polyploidy in bone marrow cells from Chinese hamsters and a positive micronucleus test in mice). It was not mutagenic in the Ames test and gave inconclusive results in the mouse lymphoma TK Locus assay.

Vinorelbine did not affect fertility to a statistically significant extent when administered to rats on either a once-weekly (9 mg/m2 , approximately one third the human dose) or alternate-day schedule (4.2 mg/m2 , approximately 0.14 times the human recommended dose) prior to and during mating. In male rats, administration of vinorelbine twice weekly for 13 or 26 weeks at dose levels of 2.1 and 7.2 mg/m2 (approximately 0.07 and 0.24 times the recommended human dose), respectively, resulted in decreased spermatogenesis and prostate/seminal vesicle secretion.


14.1 Combination Use with Cisplatin

The safety and efficacy of vinorelbine in combination with cisplatin was evaluated in two randomized, multicenter trials.

Cisplatin 100mg/m2

Study 1 was a randomized, multicenter, open-label trial of vinorelbine plus cisplatin and cisplatin alone for the treatment of stage IV or stage IIIb NSCLC in patients with malignant pleural effusion or multiple lesions in more than one lobe of the ipsilateral lung who had not received prior chemotherapy. A total of 432 patients were randomized 1:1 to receive either vinorelbine 25 mg/m2 on Day 1 then every week of each 28-day cycle plus cisplatin 100 mg/m2 administered on Day 1 of each 28-day cycle (N=214) or single agent cisplatin 100 mg/m2 on Day 1 of each 28-day cycle (N=218).

Patient demographics and disease characteristics were similar between arms. Of the overall study population, the median age was 64 (range 33 to 84), 66% were male, 80% were White, 92% had stage IV disease and 8% stage IIIB, 53% had adenocarcinoma, 21% squamous cell, 14% large cell histology. The major efficacy outcome measure was overall survival. The efficacy results are presented in Table 7 and Figure 1.

Table 7. Efficacy Results (Study 1)
Vinorelbine plus Cisplatin(N=214) Cisplatin(N=218)
Overall Survival
Median Survival in months(95% CI) 7.8(6.9, 9.6) 6.2(5.4, 7.7)
Unstratified log-rank p-value 0.01
Overall Response rate (ORR)
Evaluable patientsORR (95% CI) N=20619% (14%, 25%) N=2098% (5%, 13%)
Chi-square test p-value <0.001

Figure 1: Overall Survival Vinorelbine / Cisplatin versus Single Agent Cisplatin

Figure 1
(click image for full-size original)

Cisplatin 120mg/m 2

Study 2 was a randomized, 3-arm, open-label, multicenter trial of vinorelbine plus cisplatin, vindesine plus cisplatin and vinorelbine as a single agent for the treatment of patients with stage III or IV NSCLC who had not received prior chemotherapy. The study was conducted in Europe. A total of 612 patients were randomized 1:1:1 to receive vinorelbine 30 mg/m2 every week of a 6-week cycle plus cisplatin 120 mg/m2 on Day 1 and Day 29, then every 6 weeks thereafter (N=206); and vindesine 3 mg/m2 for 6 weeks, then every other week thereafter plus cisplatin 120 mg/m2 on Days 1 and Day 29, then every 6 weeks thereafter (N=200) or vinorelbine 30mg/m2 every week of a 6-week cycle (N=206). The main efficacy outcome measure was to compare overall survival between vinorelbine plus cisplatin and vindesine plus cisplatin. The other efficacy outcome measure was to compare overall survival in the better of the two combination regimens to that of vinorelbine as a single agent.

Patient demographics were in general similar between arms: the median age of the overall population was 60 years (range 30 to 75), 90% were male, 78% had WHO performance status of 0 or 1. Tumor characteristics were in general similar with the exception of histologic subtype of NSCLC. Adenocarcinoma was the histologic subtype in 32% of patients in the vinorelbine plus cisplatin arm, 40% of patients in vindesine plus cisplatin arm and 28% of patients on the vinorelbine arm. Ten percent of the patients had stage IIIA disease, 28% stage IIIB and 50% stage IV. Twelve percent of the patients had received prior surgery or radiotherapy.

The efficacy results of Study 2 are presented in Table 8.

Table 8. Efficacy Results (Study 2)

1 n/a = not applicable

Vinorelbine(N=206) Vinorelbine pluscisplatin(N=206) Vindesine pluscisplatin(N=200)
Median survival in months (99.5% CI) 7.2(5.4, 9.1) 9.2(7.4, 11.1) 7.4(6.1, 9.1)
Unstratified log-rankp-value n/a1 0.087
0.05 n/a
Overall Response (ORR)Evaluable PatientsORR(95% CI) N=20514%(10%, 20%) N=20328%(22%, 35%) N=19819%(14%, 25%)
Chi-square test p-value n/a 0.03
< 0.001 n/a

All resources are included in as near-original form as possible, meaning that the information from the original provider has been rendered here with only typographical or stylistic modifications and not with any substantive alterations of content, meaning or intent.

This site is provided for educational and informational purposes only, in accordance with our Terms of Use, and is not intended as a substitute for the advice of a medical doctor, nurse, nurse practitioner or other qualified health professional.

Privacy Policy | Copyright © 2022. All Rights Reserved.