IRESSA as a first-line treatment for EGFR mutation-positive advanced non-small cell lung cancer

IRESSA (gefitinib) is an oral monotherapy treatment that offers superior progression‐free survival, better tolerability and quality of life compared with platinum‐based doublet chemotherapy as first‐line treatment for epidermal growth factor receptor (EGFR) mutation‐positive advanced non‐small cell lung cancer (NSCLC).1–5

IRESSA has exhibited tolerability benefits compared with platinum‐based doublet chemotherapy, with convenient oral once‐daily dosing, better quality of life and symptom control for the patient.1–5

National Comprehensive Cancer Network (NCCN) Evidence Blocks™

The NCCN Clinical Practice Guidelines® in Oncology (NCCN Guidelines®) for NSCLC recommend an EGFR tyrosine kinase inhibitor as a first-line treatment option for patients with metastatic sensitising EGFR mutation-positive NSCLC.6

NCCN Evidence Blocks
NCCN Evidence Blocks

E = Efficay of Regimen/Agent S = Safety of Regimen/Agent Q = Quality of Evidence C = Consistency of Evidence
A = Affordability of Regimen/Agent

NCCN®, National Comprehensive Cancer Network®; NSCLC, non-small cell lung cancer
Gefitinib scored:

  • An efficacy rating of 5/5, or “highly effective,” indicating a product that often provides long-term survival advantage or has curative potential
  • A safety rating of 4/5, indicating rare significant toxicities or low-grade toxicities only, and little interference with activities of daily living
  • A quality of evidence rating of 5/5, or “high quality,” indicating multiple well-designed randomized trials and/or meta-analyses
  • A consistency of evidence rating of 5/5, or “highly consistent,” indicating multiple trials with similar outcomes
  • An affordability of regimen rating of 2/5, or “expensive”

Referenced with permission from the NCCN Clinical Practice Guidelines in Oncology (NCCN Guidelines®) with NCCN Evidence Blocks for Non-Small Cell Lung Cancer Version 6.2017. © National Comprehensive Cancer Network, Inc. 2017. All rights reserved. Available from:


  1. Mok TS et al. Gefitinib or carboplatin–paclitaxel in pulmonary adenocarcinoma. N Engl J Med 2009; 361: 947–957.
  2. Thongprasert S et al. Health‐related quality‐of‐life in a randomized phase III first‐line study of gefitinib versus carboplatin/paclitaxel in clinically selected patients from Asia with advanced NSCLC (IPASS). J Thorac Oncol 2011; 6: 1872–1880.
  3. Maemondo M et al. Gefitinib or chemotherapy for non‐small‐cell lung cancer with mutated EGFR. N Engl J Med 2010; 362: 2380–2388.
  4. Oizumi S et al. Quality of life with gefitinib in patients with EGFR‐mutated non‐small cell lung cancer: quality of life analysis of North East Japan Study Group 002 Trial. Oncologist 2012; 17: 863–870.
  5. Mitsudomi T et al. Gefitinib versus cisplatin plus docetaxel in patients with non‐small‐cell lung cancer harbouring mutations of the epidermal growth factor receptor (WJTOG3405): an open label, randomised phase 3 trial. Lancet Oncol 2010; 11: 121–128.
  6. NCCN. NCCN Clinical Practice Guidelines in Oncology NSCLC (version 8.2017), 2017. Available at: Accessed 19 July 2017.