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Brain Cancer treatment details. Biologic therapy. Chemotherapy. Duke University Medical Center, Durham, NC, United States

Survival: 5.9 months
Toxicity Grade: 5
Treatments: Biologic therapy
Country: United States
City/State/Province: Durham, NC
Hospital: Duke University Medical Center
Journal: Link
Date: 3/2009

This phase 2 trial involved 66 patients, 44 of whom were male. Of these, 34 patients had glioblastoma multiforme, 28 had anaplastic astrocytoma, and 4 had anaplastic oligodendroglioma. Tumors in all patients were resistant to temozolomide. The median age of these patients was 51, with a range of 21-69.

Patients were given a chemotherapeutic drug, temozolomide, which blocks DNA replication and growth of cancer cells. In addition, a biologic agent called O6-benzylguanine was administered. This drug blocks a DNA repair protein in cells that might be involved in temozolomide resistance.

Grade 4 toxicities, most commonly neutropenia, but also thrombocytopenia, were observed in 48% of patients. One patient died of gastrointestinal perforation, which is reported to be likely due to a pre-existing condition.

The median overall survival for all patients in this study was 5.9 months, 4.6 months for patients with GBM, and 7.8 months for patients with anaplastic glioma. The progression-free survival rate at 6 months was 17% overall, 9% for those with GBM, and 25% for anaplastic glioma.

Correspondence: Dr. Henry Friedman; e-mail:

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