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Patients with cancer are at increased risk of drug-drug interactions (DDI), which can increase treatment toxicity or decrease efficacy. It is especially important to thoroughly screen DDI in oncology clinical trial subjects to ensure trial subject safety and data accuracy. This study determined the prevalence of potential DDI involving oral anti-cancer trial agents in subjects enrolled in two SWOG clinical trials.


Completed SWOG clinical trials of commercially available agents with possible DDI that had complete concomitant medication information available at enrollment were included. Screening for DDI was conducted through three methods: protocol-guided screening, Lexicomp® screening, and pharmacist determination of clinical relevance. Descriptive statistics were calculated.


SWOG trials S0711 (dasatinib, n = 83) and S0528 (everolimus/lapatinib, n = 84) were included. Subjects received an average of 6.6 medications (standard deviation = 4.9, range 0–29) at enrollment. Based on the clinical trial protocols, at enrollment 18.6% (31/167) of subjects had a DDI and 12.0% (20/167) had a DDI that violated a protocol exclusion criterion. According to Lexicomp®, 28.7% of subjects (48/167) had a DDI classified as moderate or worse, whereas pharmacist review indicated that 7.2% of subjects (12/167) had a clinically relevant interaction. The majority of clinically relevant DDI identified were due to the coadministration of acid suppression therapies with dasatinib (83.3%, 10/12).


The high DDI prevalence in subjects enrolled on SWOG clinical trials, including a high prevalence that violate trial exclusion criteria, support the need for improved processes for DDI screening to ensure trial subject safety and trial data accuracy.


This article was originally published in BMC Cancer, volume 21, in 2021.


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