Phase I study of temozolomide and laromustine (VNP40101M) in patients with relapsed or refractory leukemia.
PURPOSE: Although alkylators are known to be effective against some myeloid leukemias, resistance is often mediated via O6-alkylguanine-DNA alkyltransferase (AGT). Temozolomide's inhibition of AGT may sensitize leukemia cells to the novel alkylator laromustine. We conducted a phase I translational study to evaluate the toxicities and estimate the maximum tolerated dose (MTD) of laromustine when administered with temozolomide (TMZ) in patients with hematologic malignancies. PATIENTS AND METHODS: TMZ was delivered twice daily for 5 doses followed by a single infusion of laromustine. The target TMZ dose was the dose that would reliably result in > 90% AGT depletion. Once the target TMZ dose was identified, the laromustine dose was escalated. A total of 35 patients with relapsed/refractory leukemia were treated. RESULTS: Treatment with TMZ 300 mg for 5 doses resulted in > 90% depletion of AGT levels in 5 of 6 patients. The MTD of the combination was established at TMZ 1500 mg and laromustine 300 mg/m2. Three of the 7 patients assayed from cohort 1 achieved > 90% depletion of AGT activity (range, 77%-100% depletion; median, 88%). Five of 6 patients enrolled in cohort 2 achieved > 90% depletion of AGT activity (range, 92%-100% depletion; median, 93.5%). This established that the 300-mg dose of TMZ (1500 mg total) would be maintained in subsequent cohorts. The majority of adverse events were primarily hematologic, with infectious and pulmonary complications also noted. Three (9%) of the patients with previous refractory disease achieved a complete remission, and 5 (14%) of the patients achieved a morphologic, leukemia-free, but persistent hypocellular bone marrow status. CONCLUSION: Laromustine in combination with TMZ is tolerable and manageable at doses that predictably suppress AGT. Reliable TMZ-induced inhibition of AGT was observed in doses that are clinically tolerable. Evidence of antitumor effect was observed with this combination, suggesting that further efficacy studies should be performed.
Rizzieri, D; LoRusso, S; Tse, W; Khan, K; Advani, A; Moore, J; Karsten, V; Cahill, A; Gerson, SL
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