Phase I clinical and pharmacokinetic studies of the taxoid derivative RPR 109881A administered as a 1-hour or a 3-hour infusion in patients with advanced solid tumors

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Purpose:To define the maximum tolerated dose (MTD), the recommended phase II dose, the optimal infusion duration and pharmacokinetics of the semisynthetic taxoid derivative RPR 109881A, given as a 1-h or 3-h infusion every 3 weeks.Patients and methods:RPR109881A was administered as a 1-h i.v. infusion to 34 patients (study 1) with oral steroids as pre-medication. In a subsequent study, 29 patients were treated at the recommended dose or at the dose immediately below (study 2); the first 14 patients received RPR 109881A as a 3-h infusion, while the subsequent 15 were randomized to receive the drug as a 1-h or 3-h infusion. The pharmacokinetics of RPR109881A was studied in plasma and urine and for selected patients in some biological fluids (cerebrospinal fluid, pleural effusion, ascitis).Results:In study 1, the dose was escalated from 15 to 105 mg/m2, at which dose two of five patients presented dose-limiting toxicities with febrile neutropenia (FN) after the first cycle, thus defining the MTD. The dose of 90 mg/m2, at which grade 3/4 neutropenia was almost universal with FN in 18%, was recommended for phase II. At 90 mg/m2 the incidence of diarrhea, fatigue and alopecia were 59, 29 and 70%, respectively. The results of study 2 were comparable to those of study 1, thus recommending the 1-h infusion duration for phase II evaluation. RPR 109881A exhibited a high total body clearance, a large distribution volume and long terminal half-life of 20 h. RPR 109881A was detected in cerebrospinal fluid shortly after the end of 1-h infusion. Three objective responses were observed in non-small-cell lung cancer (NSCLC) patients, including a patient with brain metastases.Conclusions:The antitumor activity in NSCLC, the reproducible profile of toxicity and above all the ability to cross the blood-brain barrier make RPR 109881A worthy of further disease-oriented clinical development.

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