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Thursday 01 June 2000

Complete regression of xenografted human carcinomas by camptothecin analogue-carboxymethyl dextran conjugate (T-0128).

By: Okuno S, Harada M, Yano T, Yano S, Kiuchi S, Tsuda N, Sakamura Y, Imai J, Kawaguchi T, Tsujihara K.

Cancer Res 2000 Jun 1;60(11):2988-95

Clinically available camptothecins (CPTs), such as irinotecan (CPT-11) and topotecan, represent one of the most promising classes of antitumor agents, despite their toxicity. To improve their pharmacological profiles, a new macromolecular prodrug, denoted T-0128, was synthesized. This prodrug is a novel CPT analogue (T-2513)-carboxymethyl (CM) dextran conjugate via a triglycine spacer, with a molecular weight of Mr 130,000. This study was designed to test the concept that the rational design of a CPT-polymer conjugate would increase the efficacy of the parent drug. The in vivo antitumor study against Walker-256 carcinoma demonstrated that T-0128 was 10 times as active as T-2513, supporting this concept. Additionally, comparative efficacy studies of T-0128, T-2513, CPT-11, and topotecan were performed using a panel of human tumor xenografts in nude mice, showing the advantage of T-0128 over these CPTs. The maximal tolerated doses (MTDs) of T-0128, T-2513, and CPT-11 were comparable. Even a single i.v. injection of T-0128 at 6 mg/kg (based on the amount of T-2513 bound to CM dextran) induced complete regression of MX-1 mammary carcinoma. T-0128 at 10 mg/kg weekly for 3 weeks (one-tenth of its MTD) cured LX-1 lung carcinoma. Also, T-0128 below its MTD consistently cured or regressed St-4 gastric and HT-29 colorectal tumor xenografts that are highly refractory to CPTs. These demonstrate the broad range of therapeutic doses achieved with T-0128. Pharmacokinetic studies were performed to correlate the efficacy results obtained for T-0128 with plasma and tissue drug concentrations using Walker-256 tumor-bearing rats. Results showed that after i.v. administration of T-0128, the conjugate continued to circulate at a high concentration for an extended period, resulting in tumor accumulation. In the tumor, the sustained release of T-2513 occurred. In contrast, T-2513 disappeared rapidly from the body. The significant increases in the amount and exposure time of released T-2513 in the tumor explain well the enhanced efficacy of T-0128. In conclusion, this study indicated that T-0128 improved the potency of T-2513, demonstrating the proof of the above concept.

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