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Friday 01 December 2000

Tissue distribution and antitumor activity of topotecan delivered by intracerebral clysis in a rat glioma model.

By: Kaiser MG, Parsa AT, Fine RL, Hall JS, Chakrabarti I, Bruce JN.

Neurosurgery 2000 Dec;47(6):1391-8; discussion 1398-9

OBJECTIVE: Intracerebral clysis is a drug delivery technique that depends on convection-enhanced microinfusion to achieve therapeutic drug levels within the brain. In this study, brain tumor-bearing rats were treated with topotecan delivered systemically and by the intracerebral clysis method. Our objective was to determine the efficacy and tissue distribution of topotecan delivered by intracerebral clysis. METHODS: The C6/Wistar rat glioma model was used after a thymidine incorporation assay determined topotecan sensitivity of C6 cells in vitro. Long-term survival of animals provided objective measurements of efficacy; records of animal weight during treatment and neurological status served to approximate toxicity. Topotecan tissue penetration was measured in samples of ex vivo tumor and surrounding brain tissue with high-pressure liquid chromatography. RESULTS: Dose escalation demonstrated significant sensitivity of C6 glioma cells to topotecan (median lethal dose, 0.19 micromol/L). Eleven of 12 rats bearing established intracerebral C6 glioma and receiving topotecan by intracerebral clysis survived beyond the end point of 120 days; no untreated control or systemically treated animal survived beyond 26 days (n = 18; P < 0.005). Histopathological assessment of animals demonstrated significant tumor masses in the brains of intraperitoneally treated animals and untreated control animals. In contrast, no residual tumor was found in the brains of intracerebral clysis groups. Animal weights during treatment were markedly reduced by intraperitoneal dosing (n = 6) but not by low-dose intracerebral clysis (32 microg/kg/d for 5 d; n = 6). None of the low-dose intracerebral clysis-treated animals demonstrated neurological toxicity, and one high-dose intracerebral clysis-treated animal (160 microg/kg/d for 2 d; n = 6) died during follow-up. Topotecan was detected well beyond the boundaries of the tumor and even in the contralateral hemisphere in animals treated with intracerebral clysis. CONCLUSION: Topotecan delivered by the intracerebral clysis method is effective for treatment of brain tumors in the rat glioma model. These studies provide compelling justification for further preclinical testing to formally evaluate toxicity and efficacy with variable dosing schedules.

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