Stabilizing versus Destabilizing the Microtubules: A Double-Edge Sword for an Effective Cancer Treatment Option?
CI-980 is a synthetic mitotic inhibitor that binds to the colchicine binding site of tubulin. It demonstrates broad activity against human and marine tumor models and shows no cross resistance with tumor models whose mechanism of resistance is mediated by P-glycoprotein (MDR-1). A phase I study was completed in 25 patients with solid tumors using a 24-hour infusion schedule, with courses repeated every 3 weeks. Eight dose levels were tested between 1.2 and 15.6 mg/m2. The maximum tolerated dose was 14.4 mg/m2. Neutropenia was dose-related but not dose-limiting; thrombocytopenia was infrequent. CNS toxicities were dose-limiting and consisted of dizziness, headache, loss of coordination, loss of consciousness, nervousness, and other symptoms. These events occurred near the end of the infusion and were reversible, usually within 24 hours. One patient who was to be treated at dose level 8 (intended dose was 19.2 mg/m2; actual dose was 15.6 mg/m2) became encephalopathic prior to completion of the infusion. Other adverse events included gastrointestinal toxicities (nausea, vomiting, anorexia, constipation, stomatitis, dyspepsia, bleeding, cheilitis), IV site erythema, fever, and fatigue. A partial response was observed in one patient with colon cancer and reductions in CA-125 levels were observed in 2 patients with ovarian cancer. Pharmacokinetics were linear and dose-proportional. Results indicate high systemic clearance and wide tissue distribution. Mean pharmacokinetic parameter values: T2 = 5.52 hours, plasma clearance 1163 mL/min/m2, and Vdss 376 L/m2.