Sequences of topotecan and cisplatin: Phase I, pharmacologic, and in vitro studies to examine sequence dependence

E. K. Rowinsky, S. H. Kaufmann, S. D. Baker, L. B. Grochow, T. L. Chen, D. Peereboom, M. K. Bowling, S. E. Sartorius, D. S. Ettinger, A. A. Forastiere, R. C. Donehower

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

137 Scopus citations


Purpose: A phase I and pharmacologic study was performed to evaluate the feasibility of administering the topoisomerase I (topo I) inhibitor topotecan (TPT) in combination with cisplatin (CDDP) in minimally pretreated adults with solid tumors. The study was designed to evaluate the magnitude of the toxicologic and pharmacologic differences between the two sequences of drug administration. Materials and Methods: TPT was administered as a 30-minute infusion daily for 5 days and CDDP was given either before TPT on day 1 or after TPT an day 5. Each patient was treated with both schedules on an alternating basis every 3 weeks. Sequential dose escalation of TPT or CDDP resulted in three dosage permutations of TPT/CDDP (mg/m2): 0.75/50, 1/50, and 0.75/75. After the maximum-tolerated dose (MTD) level was achieved, the feasibility of using granulocyte colony-stimulating factor (G-CSF) to permit further dose escalation was studied. To examine the interaction of TPT and CDDP in vitro, human A549 lung cancer cells were exposed to these agents concurrently and sequentially. Results: Dose-limiting neutropenia and thrombocytopenia resulted after the doses of TPT or CDDP were increased to greater than 0.75 and 50 mg/m2, respectively, without and with G-CSF. The sequence of CDDP before TPT induced significantly worse neutropenia and thrombocytopenia than the alternate sequence. In vitro studies failed to provide any evidence far the differences in the cytotoxicity of these two sequences. Instead, pharmacokinetic studies suggested that the differences in toxicity were due, in part, to lower TPT clearance and exposure when CDDP proceeds TPT, possibly due to subclinical renal tubular toxicity induced by CDDP. Conclusion: The sequence of CDDP before TPT at doses of 50 and 0.75 mg/m2, respectively, is recommended for subsequent clinical trials in tumor types in which both agents have significant single-agent activity. The potential for sequence-dependent cytotoxic, toxicologic, and pharmacologic effects should be evaluated in concurrent clinical and laboratory studies in the course of developing combination chemotherapy regimens that consist of topo I-targeting agents and other antineoplastic agents, particularly DNA- damaging agents.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)3074-3084
Number of pages11
JournalJournal of Clinical Oncology
Issue number12
StatePublished - 1996

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Oncology
  • Cancer Research


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