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Twenty-three patients with advanced inoperable squamous cell carcinoma of the esophagus were treated with amino-thiadiazole (A-TD) 125 mg/m2 weekly plus allopurinol daily in a phase II cooperative group trial. No patients responded to treatment; 17 patients progressed, three showed stable disease, and three were unevaluable. There were no life-threatening hematologic or metabolic toxicities. The median survival from study entry was 5 months. A-TD is not active in advanced squamous cell carcinoma of the esophagus.