Survival results from a Phase I study of etanidazole (SR2508) and radiotherapy in patients with malignant glioma

Eric L. Chang, Jay S. Loeffler, Nancy E. Riese, Patrick Y. Wen, Eben Alexander, Peter McL. Black, C. Norman Coleman

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

19 Scopus citations


Purpose: To report the survival results from a previous Phase I study of etanidazole (ETA) and radiotherapy in patients with glioblastoma multiforme (GBM n = 50) or anaplastic astrocytoma (AA n = 19) and examine survival according to age, Karnofsky performance status (KPS), and implant status. Patients and Methods: In a previous Phase I study, 70 previously untreated patients (median age 49) with malignant gliomas were accrued. One patient was excluded from analysis because pathology was unverifiable. All had KPS ≤ 70. Prior to initiation of treatment, patients were stratified according to whether they were candidates for interstitial implantation. The implant patients (IMP n = 14) received accelerated fractionation radiotherapy (XRT) 2 Gy BID (6 hours apart) to 40 Gy in 2 weeks with ETA 2 gm/m2 x 6 doses, a 2 week break, and then interstitial implant for an additional 50 Gy (4-7 days) with a continuous infusion of ETA over 90-96 hours. There were 55 patients treated on two sequentially conducted non-implant arms. These patients started with accelerated fractionation XRT 2 Gy BID (6 hours apart) to 40 Gy in 2 weeks with ETA 2 gm/m2 x 4-5 doses/week. Non-IMP1 arm (n = 41) received a 2-week break before standard fractionated boost XRT of 2 Gy/day for 2 weeks to a total dose of 60 Gy with ETA. Non-IMP2 arm (n = 14) did not have the 2- week break. All patients had plasma pharmacokinetic monitoring of ETA. Subsequent follow-up study provided information regarding long-term survival status of this group of patients. The Phase I toxicity evaluation was conducted according to the RTOG toxicity scale and was found well tolerated in both groups. Overall actuarial survival was plotted for all patients, by histologic group, and by implant status. Subset analyses of GBM patients by age (≤ 49 or > 49 years), KPS (≤ 80 or > 80) and implant versus non- implant were also performed. Results: Median survival of GBM patients was 1.1 years and that of anaplastic astrocytoma patients was 3.1 years (p = 6.0001). In GBM patients, KPS > 80, implanted patients, and age ≤ 49 were factors found not to be associated with a statistically improved survival. Conclusion: The results of survival in this Phase I etanidazole study of patients with anaplastic astrocytoma are comparable to the results from other studies using bromodeoxyuridine, iododeoxyuridine, or procarbazine, lomustine (CCNU), and vincristine. The use of etanidazole with accelerated radiotherapy does not appear to improve survival in patients with glioblastoma multiforme compared to those treated with conventional therapies.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)65-70
Number of pages6
JournalInternational Journal of Radiation Oncology Biology Physics
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jan 1 1998
Externally publishedYes


  • Accelerated radiotherapy
  • Anaplastic astrocytoma
  • Etanidazole (SR2508)
  • Glioblastoma multiforme
  • Interstitial implantation
  • Malignant glioma

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Radiation
  • Oncology
  • Radiology Nuclear Medicine and imaging
  • Cancer Research


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