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Tuesday 15 May 2001

Feasibility of four consecutive high-dose chemotherapy cycles with stem-cell rescue for patients with newly diagnosed medulloblastoma or supratentorial primitive neuroectodermal tumor after craniospinal radiotherapy: results of a collaborative study.

By: Strother D, Ashley D, Kellie SJ, Patel A, Jones-Wallace D, Thompson S, Heideman R, Benaim E, Krance R, Bowman L, Gajjar A.

J Clin Oncol 2001 May 15;19(10):2696-704

PURPOSE: This study was designed to determine the feasibility and safety of delivering four consecutive cycles of high-dose cyclophosphamide, cisplatin, and vincristine, each followed by stem-cell rescue, every 4 weeks, after completion of risk-adapted craniospinal irradiation to children with newly diagnosed medulloblastoma or supratentorial primitive neuroectodermal tumor (PNET). PATIENTS AND METHODS: Fifty-three patients, 19 with high-risk disease and 34 with average-risk disease, were enrolled onto this study. After surgical resection, high-risk patients were treated with topotecan in a 6-week phase II window followed by craniospinal radiation therapy and four cycles of high-dose cyclophosphamide (4,000 mg/m2 per cycle), with cisplatin (75 mg/m2 per cycle), and vincristine (two 1.5-mg/m2 doses per cycle). Support with peripheral blood stem cells or bone marrow and with granulocyte colony-stimulating factor was administered after each cycle of high-dose chemotherapy. Treatment of average-risk patients consisted of surgical resection and craniospinal irradiation, followed by the same chemotherapy given to patients with high-risk disease. The expected duration of the chemotherapy was 16 weeks, with a cumulative cyclophosphamide dose of 16,000 mg/m2 and a planned dose-intensity of 1,000 mg/m2/wk. RESULTS: Fifty of the 53 patients commenced high-dose chemotherapy, and 49 patients completed all four cycles. The median length of chemotherapy cycles one through four was 28, 27, 29, and 28 days, respectively. Engraftment occurred at a median of 14 to 15 days after infusion of stem cells or autologous bone marrow. The intended dose-intensity of cyclophosphamide was 1,000 mg/m2/wk; the median delivered dose-intensity was 1,014, 1,023, 974, and 991 mg/m2/wk for cycles 1 through 4, respectively; associated median relative dose-intensity was 101%, 102%, 97%, and 99%. No deaths were attributable to the toxic effects of high-dose chemotherapy. Early outcome analysis indicates a 2-year progression-free survival of 93.6% +/- 4.7% for the average-risk patients. For the high-risk patients, the 2-year progression-free survival is 73.7% +/- 10.5% from the start of therapy and 84.2% +/- 8.6% from the start of radiation therapy. CONCLUSION: Administering four consecutive cycles of high-dose chemotherapy with stem-cell support after surgical resection and craniospinal irradiation is feasible in newly diagnosed patients with medulloblastoma/supratentorial PNET with aggressive supportive care. The early outcome results of this approach are very encouraging.

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