The role of tiopronin for the prevention of chemotherapy-related liver toxicity in advanced colorectal cancer patients treated with mFOLFOX7: a prospective analysis

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Aims and background.

Chemotherapy-related hepatotoxicity is a limitation for the continuation of chemotherapy in patients with advanced colorectal cancer (CRC). This prospective study determined the efficacy of tiopronin infusion in chemotherapy-induced hepatoxicity.

Methods and study design.

One hundred and fifty patients having advanced CRC treated with first-line palliative chemotherapy were included, of whom 86 were treated with mFOLFOX7 plus supplementation of tiopronin and 64 were treated with the same regimen without tiopronin. Aspartate aminotransferase (AST), alanine transaminase (ALT), lactate dehydrogenase (LDH), total bilirubin (TBIL), gammaglutamyl transferase (γ-GT), alkaline phosphatase (ALP), and albumin (ALB) were recorded before treatment and during every therapy cycle. In addition, course discontinuations, dose reductions, and chemotherapy efficacy were evaluated.


The age and gender of the two groups were comparable (P >0.05). The proportions of abnormal mean ALT (P = 0.042), AST (P = 0.045), TBIL (P = 0.044) and ALB (P = 0.043) were significantly lower in the tiopronin group than the control group. Course discontinuations (P = 0.002), dose reductions (P = 0.005) and efficacy (P = 0.012) were significantly different between the two groups. Multivariate logistic regression analysis showed that the hepatoprotective drug played an important role in clinical outcome (OR = 6.837; 95% CI, 1.845 to 25.333; P = 0.004).


Tiopronin tends to decrease the incidence of chemotherapy-induced hepatoxicity, enhance patients’ tolerance to mFOLFOX7 treatment, and even benefit the efficacy of chemotherapy.

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