Penetration of intra-arterially administered vincristine in experimental brain tumor

Frances M. Boyle, Susan L. Eller, Stuart A. Grossman

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

68 Scopus citations


Vincristine is an integral part of the "PCV" regimen that is commonly administered to treat primary brain tumors. The efficacy of vincristine as a single agent in these tumors has been poorly studied. This study was designed to determine whether vincristine enters normal rat brain or an intracranially or subcutaneously implanted glioma and to assess the presence of the efflux pump P-glycoprotein (P-gp) on tumor and vascular endothelial cells. The 9L rat gliosarcoma was implanted intracranially and subcutaneously in three Fischer 344 rats. On day 7, [3H]vincristine (50 μCi, 4.8 μg) was injected into the carotid artery, and the animals were euthanized 10 or 20 min later. Quantitative autoradiography revealed that vincristine levels in the liver were 6- to 11-fold greater than in the i.c. tumor, and 15- to 37-fold greater than in normal brain, the reverse of the expected pattern with intra-arterial delivery. Vincristine levels in the s.c. tumor were 2-fold higher than levels in the i.c. tumor. P-gp was detected with JSB1 antibody in vascular endothelium of both normal brain and the i.c. tumor, but not in the tumor cells in either location, or in endothelial cells in the s.c. tumor. These results demonstrate that vincristine has negligible penetration of normal rat brain or i.c. 9L glioma despite intra-arterial delivery and the presence of blood-brain barrier dysfunction as demonstrated by Evan's blue. Furthermore, this study suggests that P-gp-mediated efflux from endothelium may explain these findings. The lack of penetration of vincristine into brain tumor and the paucity of single-agent activity studies suggest that vincristine should not be used in the treatment of primary brain tumors.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)300-305
Number of pages6
Issue number4
StatePublished - Oct 2004
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Oncology
  • Clinical Neurology
  • Cancer Research


Dive into the research topics of 'Penetration of intra-arterially administered vincristine in experimental brain tumor'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this