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Safety and efficacy of high-dose chemotherapy with autologous stem cell transplantation for patients with malignant astrocytomas.

Al Musella's Comments: (This is his personal views and are not necessarily the views of the Musella Foundation!)


Posted on: 06/08/2004

Safety and efficacy of high-dose chemotherapy with autologous stem cell transplantation for patients with malignant astrocytomas.

1: Cancer. 2004 May 15;100(10):2201-7.

Chen B, Ahmed T, Mannancheril A, Gruber M, Benzil DL.

Department of Neurosurgery, New York Medical College, Valhalla, New York 10595, USA.

BACKGROUND: Malignant astrocytomas are among the most resistant tumors to curative treatments. Mean survival without treatment is measured in weeks, and even with maximal surgery and radiation, the mean reported survival is < 1 year. The advent of supportive treatments and newer agents has resulted in benefits for many patients with cancer. The authors investigated the safety and effect on survival of a high-dose thiotepa and carboplatin regimen with autologous stem cell transplantation (ASCT) in patients with malignant astrocytomas who were enrolled in a prospective trial approved by an institutional review board (IRB).

METHODS: Twenty-one patients were enrolled in an IRB-approved, prospective trial. After baseline testing was completed, patients underwent peripheral stem cell mobilization with cyclophosphamide (4 g/m2) and etoposide (450 mg/m2) followed by granulocyte-colony-stimulating factor (10 microg/kg). Peripheral stem cells were harvested when leukocyte counts recovered. Patients received 2 cycles of thiotepa (750 mg/m2) and carboplatin (1600 mg/m2) followed by infusion of the preserved stem cells. The cycles were administered 6-10 weeks apart. Primary outcome measures were patient survival (Kaplan-Meier analysis) and treatment toxicity (using National Cancer Institute common toxicity criteria).

RESULTS: Autologous stem cells were harvested effectively and transfused in all patients. Kaplan-Meier survival analysis demonstrated a survival time of 34.3 +/- 5.5 months (range, 9-94 months). Despite significant myelosuppression, only three patients experienced Grade 4 complications and eight experienced Grade 3 complications.

CONCLUSIONS: High-dose chemotherapy with thiotepa and carboplatin with concomitant ASCT was used safely to treat patients with malignant astrocytomas and may provide a survival advantage.

Copyright 2004 American Cancer Society. PMID: 15139065 [PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]

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