Suramin therapy for patients with symptomatic hormone-refractory prostate cancer: Results of a randomized phase III trial comparing suramin plus hydrocortisone to placebo plus hydrocortisone

Eric J. Small, Mark Meyer, M. Ernest Marshall, Leonard M. Reyno, Frederick J. Meyers, Ronald B. Natale, Peter F. Lenehan, Liang Chen, William J. Slichenmyer, Mario Eisenberger

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148 Scopus citations

Abstract

Purpose: Suramin is a novel agent that has demonstrated preliminary evidence of antitumor activity in hormone-refractory prostate cancer (HRPC). A prospective randomized clinical trial was designed to evaluate pain and opioid analgesic intake as surrogates for antitumor response in HRPC patients with significant, opioid analgesic-dependent pain. Patients and Methods: A double-blind, placebo-controlled trial randomized patients to receive a 78- day, outpatient regimen of either suramin plus hydrocortisone (HC, 40 mg/d) or placebo plus HC. Treatment assignment was unblinded when either disease progression or dose-limiting toxicity occurred; placebo patients were allowed to cross-over to open-label suramin plus HC. In addition to pain and opioid analgesic intake, prostate-specific antigen (PSA) response, time to disease progression, quality of life, performance status, and survival were compared. Results: Overall mean reductions in combined pain and opioid analgesic intake were greater for suramin plus HC (rank sum P = .0001). Pain response was achieved in a higher proportion of patients receiving suramin than placebo (43% v 28%; P = .001), and duration of response was longer for suramin responders (median, 240 v 69 days; P = .0027). Time to disease progression was longer (relative risk = 1.5; 95% confidence interval, 1.2 to 1.9) and the proportion of patients with a greater than 50% decline in PSA was higher (33% v 16%; P = .01) in patients who received suramin. Neither quality of life nor performance status was decreased by suramin treatment, and overall survival was similar. Most adverse events were of mild or moderate intensity and were easily managed medically. Conclusion: Outpatient treatment with suramin plus HC is well tolerated and provides moderate palliative benefit and delay in disease progression for patients with symptomatic HRPC. (C) 2000 by American Society of Clinical Oncology.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1440-1450
Number of pages11
JournalJournal of Clinical Oncology
Volume18
Issue number7
StatePublished - Apr 2000

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ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Cancer Research
  • Oncology

Cite this

Small, E. J., Meyer, M., Marshall, M. E., Reyno, L. M., Meyers, F. J., Natale, R. B., Lenehan, P. F., Chen, L., Slichenmyer, W. J., & Eisenberger, M. (2000). Suramin therapy for patients with symptomatic hormone-refractory prostate cancer: Results of a randomized phase III trial comparing suramin plus hydrocortisone to placebo plus hydrocortisone. Journal of Clinical Oncology, 18(7), 1440-1450.