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"A nitrogen mustard alkylating agent used as antineoplastic for chronic lymphocytic leukemia, Hodgkin's disease, and others. Although it is less toxic than most other nitrogen mustards, it has been listed as a known carcinogen in the Fourth Annual Report on Carcinogens (NTP 85-002, 1985). (Merck Index, 11th ed)" (MeSH 2013)

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Web Resources: Chlorambucil
Latest Research Publications

Web Resources: Chlorambucil (6 links)

Latest Research Publications

This list of publications is regularly updated (Source: PubMed).

Clark E, Boffa M, Magri C, Muscat V
Chlorambucil-Induced Radiation Recall Dermatitis.
Skinmed. 2015 Jul-Aug; 13(4):317-9 [PubMed] Related Publications
A 65-year-old woman was diagnosed with low-grade non-Hodgkin lymphoma (Figure 1). She was treated with six cycles of cyclophosphamide, hydroxydaunorubicin, oncovin (vincristine), and prednisolone (CHOP) and three cycles of fludarabine and mitoxantrone. Ten months later she received radiotherapy to the left groin (total dose of 50 Gy in 25 fractions over 5 weeks) without complications.

Burger JA, Tedeschi A, Barr PM, et al.
Ibrutinib as Initial Therapy for Patients with Chronic Lymphocytic Leukemia.
N Engl J Med. 2015; 373(25):2425-37 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
BACKGROUND: Chronic lymphocytic leukemia (CLL) primarily affects older persons who often have coexisting conditions in addition to disease-related immunosuppression and myelosuppression. We conducted an international, open-label, randomized phase 3 trial to compare two oral agents, ibrutinib and chlorambucil, in previously untreated older patients with CLL or small lymphocytic lymphoma.
METHODS: We randomly assigned 269 previously untreated patients who were 65 years of age or older and had CLL or small lymphocytic lymphoma to receive ibrutinib or chlorambucil. The primary end point was progression-free survival as assessed by an independent review committee.
RESULTS: The median age of the patients was 73 years. During a median follow-up period of 18.4 months, ibrutinib resulted in significantly longer progression-free survival than did chlorambucil (median, not reached vs. 18.9 months), with a risk of progression or death that was 84% lower with ibrutinib than that with chlorambucil (hazard ratio, 0.16; P<0.001). Ibrutinib significantly prolonged overall survival; the estimated survival rate at 24 months was 98% with ibrutinib versus 85% with chlorambucil, with a relative risk of death that was 84% lower in the ibrutinib group than in the chlorambucil group (hazard ratio, 0.16; P=0.001). The overall response rate was higher with ibrutinib than with chlorambucil (86% vs. 35%, P<0.001). The rates of sustained increases from baseline values in the hemoglobin and platelet levels were higher with ibrutinib. Adverse events of any grade that occurred in at least 20% of the patients receiving ibrutinib included diarrhea, fatigue, cough, and nausea; adverse events occurring in at least 20% of those receiving chlorambucil included nausea, fatigue, neutropenia, anemia, and vomiting. In the ibrutinib group, four patients had a grade 3 hemorrhage and one had a grade 4 hemorrhage. A total of 87% of the patients in the ibrutinib group are continuing to take ibrutinib.
CONCLUSIONS: Ibrutinib was superior to chlorambucil in previously untreated patients with CLL or small lymphocytic lymphoma, as assessed by progression-free survival, overall survival, response rate, and improvement in hematologic variables. (Funded by Pharmacyclics and others; RESONATE-2 ClinicalTrials.gov number, NCT01722487.).

Herring W, Pearson I, Purser M, et al.
Cost Effectiveness of Ofatumumab Plus Chlorambucil in First-Line Chronic Lymphocytic Leukaemia in Canada.
Pharmacoeconomics. 2016; 34(1):77-90 [PubMed] Related Publications
OBJECTIVE: Our objective was to estimate the cost effectiveness of ofatumumab plus chlorambucil (OChl) versus chlorambucil in patients with chronic lymphocytic leukaemia for whom fludarabine-based therapies are considered inappropriate from the perspective of the publicly funded healthcare system in Canada.
METHODS: A semi-Markov model (3-month cycle length) used survival curves to govern progression-free survival (PFS) and overall survival (OS). Efficacy and safety data and health-state utility values were estimated from the COMPLEMENT-1 trial. Post-progression treatment patterns were based on clinical guidelines, Canadian treatment practices and published literature. Total and incremental expected lifetime costs (in Canadian dollars [$Can], year 2013 values), life-years and quality-adjusted life-years (QALYs) were computed. Uncertainty was assessed via deterministic and probabilistic sensitivity analyses.
RESULTS: The discounted lifetime health and economic outcomes estimated by the model showed that, compared with chlorambucil, first-line treatment with OChl led to an increase in QALYs (0.41) and total costs ($Can27,866) and to an incremental cost-effectiveness ratio (ICER) of $Can68,647 per QALY gained. In deterministic sensitivity analyses, the ICER was most sensitive to the modelling time horizon and to the extrapolation of OS treatment effects beyond the trial duration. In probabilistic sensitivity analysis, the probability of cost effectiveness at a willingness-to-pay threshold of $Can100,000 per QALY gained was 59 %.
CONCLUSIONS: Base-case results indicated that improved overall response and PFS for OChl compared with chlorambucil translated to improved quality-adjusted life expectancy. Sensitivity analysis suggested that OChl is likely to be cost effective subject to uncertainty associated with the presence of any long-term OS benefit and the model time horizon.

Fan M, Liang X, Li Z, et al.
Chlorambucil gemcitabine conjugate nanomedicine for cancer therapy.
Eur J Pharm Sci. 2015; 79:20-6 [PubMed] Related Publications
Self-assembly of anticancer small molecules into nanostructures may represent an attractive approach to improve the treatment of experimental solid tumors. As a proof of concept, we designed and synthesized the conjugate prodrug of hydrophilic gemcitabine by its covalent coupling to hydrophobic chlorambucil via a hydrolyzable ester linkage. The resulting amphiphilic conjugates self-assembled into nanoparticles in water and exhibited significant anticancer activity in vitro against a variety of human cancer cells. In vivo anticancer activity of these nanoparticles has been tested on subcutaneous grafted SMMC-7721 hepatocellular carcinoma model. Such chlorambucil gemcitabine conjugate nanomedicine should have potential applications in cancer therapy.

Lepretre S, Dartigeas C, Feugier P, et al.
Systematic review of the recent evidence for the efficacy and safety of chlorambucil in the treatment of B-cell malignancies.
Leuk Lymphoma. 2016; 57(4):852-65 [PubMed] Related Publications
Emergence of new agents has deeply modified treatment options and the role of chlorambucil (CLB) in B-cell malignancies. We conducted a systematic review of prospective, randomized, controlled trials (RCTs) investigating the benefits and harms of CLB used alone or in combination with other treatment in patients suffering from chronic lymphocytic leukemia (CLL), low-grade non-Hodgkin lymphoma (NHL) or Waldenström macroglobulinemia (WM). For CLL, review of the nine RCTs showed that the main advantage of CLB is its low toxicity in comparison with purine nucleoside analogs like fludarabine in either CLL or NHL. In CLL, the major disadvantage is the very low rate of complete response, except when combining an anti-CD20 antibody. For B-cell lymphoma and WM, six RCTs were summarized. Results according to the usual criteria are presented and the role of CLB, used mostly in combination with an anti-CD20 antibody, is discussed for each indication, in particular for unfit patients.

Fang S, Niu Y, Zhang W, et al.
Liposome-like nanocapsules of dual drug-tailed betaine for cancer therapy.
Int J Pharm. 2015; 493(1-2):460-5 [PubMed] Related Publications
A novel dual drug-tailed betaine conjugate amphiphile has been firstly synthesized in which the polar headgroup is derived from glycine betaine and the hydrophobic tails are chlorambucil molecules. The newly prepared conjugate undergoes self-assembly to form stable liposome-like nanocapsules as an effective carrier with high drug loading capacity. The nanocapsules showed higher cytotoxic effects to cancer cell lines than those of free chlorambucil in vitro, and inhibited tumor growth effectively in vivo. This strategy that utilizes new dual drug-tailed betaine conjugate amphiphile to construct a self-assembled nanoparticle drug delivery system may have great potential in cancer chemotherapy.

Li MH, Swenson R, Harel M, et al.
Antitumor Activity of a Novel Sphingosine-1-Phosphate 2 Antagonist, AB1, in Neuroblastoma.
J Pharmacol Exp Ther. 2015; 354(3):261-8 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
The bioactive lipid sphingosine-1-phosphate (S1P) and its receptors (S1P1-5) play critical roles in many pathologic processes, including cancer. The S1P axis has become a bona fide therapeutic target in cancer. JTE-013 [N-​(2,​6-​dichloro-​4-​pyridinyl)-​2-​[1,​3-​dimethyl-​4-​(1-​methylethyl)-​1H-​pyrazolo[3,​4-​b]pyridin-​6-​yl]-​hydrazinecarboxamide], a known S1P2 antagonist, suffers from instability in vivo. Structurally modified, more potent, and stable S1P2 inhibitors would be desirable pharmacological tools. One of the JTE-013 derivatives, AB1 [N-(1H-4-isopropyl-1-allyl-3-methylpyrazolo[3,4-b]pyridine-6-yl)-amino-N'-(2,6-dichloropyridine-4-yl) urea], exhibited improved S1P2 antagonism compared with JTE-013. Intravenous pharmacokinetics indicated enhanced stability or slower clearance of AB1 in vivo. Migration assays in glioblastoma showed that AB1 was slightly more effective than JTE-013 in blocking S1P2-mediated inhibition of cell migration. Functional studies in the neuroblastoma (NB) cell line SK-N-AS showed that AB1 displayed potency at least equivalent to JTE-013 in affecting signaling molecules downstream of S1P2. Similarly, AB1 inhibition of the growth of SK-N-AS tumor xenografts was improved compared with JTE-013. Cell viability assays excluded that this enhanced AB1 effect is caused by inhibition of cancer cell survival. Both JTE-013 and AB1 trended to inhibit (C-C motif) ligand 2 expression and were able to significantly inhibit subsequent tumor-associated macrophage infiltration in NB xenografts. Interestingly, AB1 was more effective than JTE-013 in inhibiting the expression of the profibrotic mediator connective tissue growth factor. The terminal deoxynucleotidyl transferase-mediated digoxigenin-deoxyuridine nick-end labeling assay and cleaved caspase-3 detection further demonstrated that apoptosis was increased in AB1-treated NB xenografts compared with JTE-013. Overall, the modification of JTE-013 to produce the AB1 compound improved potency, intravenous pharmacokinetics, cellular activity, and antitumor activity in NB and may have enhanced clinical and experimental applicability.

Hillmen P, Robak T, Janssens A, et al.
Chlorambucil plus ofatumumab versus chlorambucil alone in previously untreated patients with chronic lymphocytic leukaemia (COMPLEMENT 1): a randomised, multicentre, open-label phase 3 trial.
Lancet. 2015; 385(9980):1873-83 [PubMed] Related Publications
BACKGROUND: Treatment for patients with chronic lymphocytic leukaemia who are elderly or who have comorbidities is challenging because fludarabine-based chemoimmunotherapies are mostly not suitable. Chlorambucil remains the standard of care in many countries. We aimed to investigate whether the addition of ofatumumab to chlorambucil could lead to better clinical outcomes than does treatment with chlorambucil alone, while also being tolerable for patients who have few treatment options.
METHODS: We carried out a randomised, open-label, phase 3 trial for treatment-naive patients with chronic lymphocytic leukaemia in 109 centres in 16 countries. We included patients who had active disease needing treatment, but in whom fludarabine-based treatment was not possible. We randomly assigned patients (1:1) to receive oral chlorambucil (10 mg/m(2)) on days 1-7 of a 28 day treatment course or to receive chlorambucil by this schedule plus intravenous ofatumumab (cycle 1: 300 mg on day 1 and 1000 mg on day 8; subsequent cycles: 1000 mg on day 1) for three to 12 cycles. Assignment was done with a randomisation list that was computer generated at GlaxoSmithKline, and was stratified, in a block size of two, by age, disease stage, and performance status. The primary endpoint was progression-free survival in the intention-to-treat population and assessment was done by an independent review committee that was masked to group assignment. The study is registered with ClinicalTrials.gov, number NCT00748189.
FINDINGS: We enrolled 447 patients, median age 69 years (range 35-92). Between Dec 22, 2008, and May 26, 2011, we randomly assigned 221 patients to chlorambucil plus ofatumumab and 226 patients to chlorambucil alone. Median progression-free survival was 22·4 months (95% CI 19·0-25·2) in the group assigned to chlorambucil plus ofatumumab compared with 13·1 months (10·6-13·8) in the group assigned to chlorambucil only (hazard ratio 0·57, 95% CI 0·45-0·72; p<0·0001). Grade 3 or greater adverse events were more common in the chlorambucil plus ofatumumab group (109 [50%] patients; vs 98 [43%] given chlorambucil alone), with neutropenia being the most common event (56 [26%] vs 32 [14%]). Grade 3 or greater infections had similar frequency in both groups. Grade 3 or greater infusion-related adverse events were reported in 22 (10%) patients given chlorambucil plus ofatumumab. Five (2%) patients died during treatment in each group.
INTERPRETATION: Addition of ofatumumab to chlorambucil led to clinically important improvements with a manageable side-effect profile in treatment-naive patients with chronic lymphocytic leukaemia who were elderly or had comorbidities. Chlorambucil plus ofatumumab is therefore an important treatment option for these patients who cannot tolerate more intensive therapy.
FUNDING: GlaxoSmithKline, Genmab A/S.

Wang X, Li J, Xu C, et al.
Scopine as a novel brain-targeting moiety enhances the brain uptake of chlorambucil.
Bioconjug Chem. 2014; 25(11):2046-54 [PubMed] Related Publications
The blood brain barrier (BBB) represents the biggest challenge for therapeutic drugs to enter the brain. In our study, we selected chlorambucil (CHL), an alkylating agent, as the model therapeutic agent, and used scopine as a novel brain-targeting moiety. Here, we synthesized Chlorambucil-Scopine (CHLS) prodrug and evaluated its brain-targeting efficacy. The tissue distribution study after i.v. injection revealed that the AUC0-t and Cmax of CHLS in the brain were 14.25- and 12.20-fold of CHL, respectively. Specifically, CHLS accumulated in bEnd.3 and C6 cells in an energy-dependent manner. In C6 cells, superior anti-glioma activity with a significantly decreased IC50 of 65.42 nM/mL was observed for CHLS compared to CHL (IC50 > 400 nM/mL). The safety evaluation, including acute toxicity, pathology, and hematology study, showed minimal toxicity toward nontargeting tissues, and also reached a lower systemic toxicity at 5 mg/kg (i.v.). Our results suggested that scopine is a potential brain-targeting moiety for enhancing the brain uptake efficiency of CHL.

Goede V, Eichhorst B, Fischer K, et al.
Past, present and future role of chlorambucil in the treatment of chronic lymphocytic leukemia.
Leuk Lymphoma. 2015; 56(6):1585-92 [PubMed] Related Publications
For many decades, chlorambucil was the standard of care for chronic lymphocytic leukemia (CLL), but meanwhile has been replaced by purine analog-based chemoimmunotherapy. Monotherapy with the alkylator only retained significance in the treatment of older patients unfit for standard treatment. After successful phase II studies, recent phase III trials established combinations of chlorambucil with anti-CD20 antibodies such as rituximab, ofatumumab and obinutuzumab as a valuable treatment option for these patients. Today, chlorambucil therefore should be used as a chemotherapy backbone for antibody-based chemoimmunotherapy in this patient population rather than as monotherapy. Starting from the past role of chlorambucil in CLL treatment, we here review the most recent efforts to elaborate chlorambucil-based chemoimmunotherapy in CLL and discuss clinically relevant questions that arise from this approach.

Martinelli G, Montoro J, Vanazzi A, et al.
Chlorambucil-rituximab as first-line therapy in patients affected by follicular non-Hodgkin's lymphoma: a retrospective single-centre study.
Hematol Oncol. 2015; 33(4):129-35 [PubMed] Related Publications
Rituximab, a chimeric monoclonal antibody directed against the CD20 antigen, has been shown to be active in newly diagnosed and relapsed patients with follicular lymphoma (FL), both as monotherapy and in combination with chemotherapy. Many studies suggest that the prognosis of patients with FL may improve when it is used in combination with chemotherapy. Despite these advances, the disease remains essentially incurable with standard therapy, and novel approaches to treatment are needed because optimal therapy is not defined. The combination of chlorambucil-rituximab is one of several standard treatment options for FL. Here, we considered data arising from 75 patients with newly diagnosed FL at the European Institute of Oncology treated with the combination of rituximab plus chlorambucil. The aim of this study was to evaluate the efficacy and safety of chlorambucil and rituximab, delivered 6 mg/m(2) /day orally for 6 weeks and 375 mg/m(2) in a standard 4-weekly schedule, respectively. Patients responding to the induction therapy received a prolonged therapy with four additional cycles of chlorambucil plus rituximab. Seventy-one patients (94.6%) completed the treatment; four patients discontinued treatment because of grade 3-4 hematological toxicity. The overall response rate was 97.3% including 74.7% of complete responses. Only two patients had a stable disease at revaluation after treatment. With a median follow-up of 57 months, 72 patients (96%) are alive. Median event-free survival (EFS) and median overall survival (OS) were not reached; 5-year OS rate was 98.4%. The 5-year EFS was 71.3%. By univariate and multivariate analyses, elevated beta-2 microglobulin levels and partial responses to therapy were correlated with worse EFS. These results suggest that the combination of chlorambucil and rituximab is an active and safe regimen in patients with newly diagnosed FL, principally in those with low tumour burden and favourable prognostic factors.

van den Broek EC, Oerlemans S, Nijziel MR, et al.
Impact of active surveillance, chlorambucil, and other therapy on health-related quality of life in patients with CLL/SLL in the Netherlands.
Ann Hematol. 2015; 94(1):45-56 [PubMed] Related Publications
As survival of patients with chronic lymphocytic leukemia/small lymphocytic lymphoma (CLL/SLL) increases and the number of patients who live long rises, health-related quality of life (HRQoL) becomes a relevant endpoint. Few studies investigated this, mainly as a secondary endpoint in randomized clinical trials where patients with early stage CLL/SLL, and elderly/frail patients were underrepresented. The aim of our study was to assess HRQoL in a population-based setting, including these previously underrepresented patients. Out of 175 patients diagnosed with CLL/SLL between 2004 and 2011, 136 (78 %) returned the HRQoL questionnaire. The outcomes were compared to an age- and sex-matched norm population. Detailed data on stage and treatment were extracted from a population-based hematological registry (PHAROS). Patients ever treated for CLL/SLL reported significantly poorer HRQoL than the norm population (p < 0.01 with large clinically important differences. Interestingly, no differences were observed between the norm population and patients under active surveillance. In contrast to our hypothesis, patients treated with chlorambucil reported the lowest HRQoL scores. Drastic, long-lasting negative effects of starting treatment on HRQoL cannot be excluded, whereas active surveillance does not seem to provoke worrying, anxiety, or depressive symptoms. Further elaborate research into the impact of starting therapy on HRQoL is needed, especially in patients that are underrepresented in most clinical trials, and thoroughly consider its results during revision of treatment guidelines.

Jean SR, Pereira MP, Kelley SO
Structural modifications of mitochondria-targeted chlorambucil alter cell death mechanism but preserve MDR evasion.
Mol Pharm. 2014; 11(8):2675-82 [PubMed] Related Publications
Multidrug resistance (MDR) remains one of the major obstacles in chemotherapy, potentially rendering a multitude of drugs ineffective. Previously, we have demonstrated that mitochondrial targeting of DNA damaging agents is a promising tool for evading a number of common resistance factors that are present in the nucleus or cytosol. In particular, mitochondria-targeted chlorambucil (mt-Cbl) has increased potency and activity against resistant cancer cells compared to the parent compound chlorambucil (Cbl). However, it was found that, due to its high reactivity, mt-Cbl induces a necrotic type of cell death via rapid nonspecific alkylation of mitochondrial proteins. Here, we demonstrate that by tuning the alkylating activity of mt-Cbl via chemical modification, the rate of generation of protein adducts can be reduced, resulting in a shift of the cell death mechanism from necrosis to a more controlled apoptotic pathway. Moreover, we demonstrate that all of the modified mt-Cbl compounds effectively evade MDR resulting from cytosolic GST-μ upregulation by rapidly accumulating in mitochondria, inducing cell death directly from within. In this study, we systematically elucidated the advantages and limitations of targeting alkylating agents with varying reactivity to mitochondria.

Kalita S, Verma AK, Prasad SB
Chlorambucil and ascorbic acid-mediated anticancer activity and hematological toxicity in Dalton's ascites lymphoma-bearing mice.
Indian J Exp Biol. 2014; 52(2):112-24 [PubMed] Related Publications
Chlorambucil is an anticancer drug with alkylating and immunosuppressive activities. Considering various reports on the possible antioxidant/protective functions of ascorbic acid (vitamin C), it was aimed at to explore the modulatory effect of ascorbic acid on therapeutic efficacy and toxicity induced by chlorambucil. Dalton's ascites lymphoma tumor serially maintained in Swiss albino mice were used for the present experiments. The result of antitumor activity showed that combination treatment with ascorbic acid and chlorambucil exhibited enhanced antitumor activity with 170% increase in life span (ILS), which is significantly higher as compared to chlorambucil alone (ILS 140%). Analysis of apoptosis in Dalton's lymphoma tumor cells revealed a significantly higher apoptotic index after combination treatment as compared to chlorambucil alone. Blood hemoglobin content, erythrocytes and leukocytes counts were decreased after chlorambucil treatment, however, overall recovery in these hematological values was noted after combination treatment. Chlorambucil treatment also caused morphological abnormalities in red blood cells, majority of which include acanthocytes, burr and microcystis. Combination treatment of mice with ascorbic acid plus chlorambucil showed less histopathological changes in kidney as compared to chlorambucil treatment alone, thus, ascorbic acid is effective in reducing chlorambucil-induced renal toxicity in the hosts. Based on the results, for further development, hopefully into the clinical usage, the administration of ascorbic acid in combination with chlorambucil may be recommended.

Mulligan SP, Karlsson K, Strömberg M, et al.
Cladribine prolongs progression-free survival and time to second treatment compared to fludarabine and high-dose chlorambucil in chronic lymphocytic leukemia.
Leuk Lymphoma. 2014; 55(12):2769-77 [PubMed] Related Publications
We conducted a randomized phase III trial to compare the efficacy and safety of two purine analogs, cladribine and fludarabine, with high-dose chlorambucil, in patients with previously untreated chronic lymphocytic leukemia (CLL). Between 1997 and 2004, 223 patients with CLL were randomly assigned to cladribine, fludarabine or chlorambucil, for six cycles of therapy with frequent health-related quality of life assessments. There was no statistical difference for the primary endpoint of overall response with cladribine (70%), fludarabine (67%) and chlorambucil (59%), or complete remission (12%, 7% and 8%), respectively. However, the median progression-free survival (25, 10, 9 months) and median time to second treatment (40, 22, 21 months) were superior with cladribine. There was no significant difference in overall survival (96, 82 and 91 months), nor in toxicity or HRQoL assessments. Monotherapy with cladribine gives superior PFS and longer response duration than fludarabine and chlorambucil as first-line treatment of CLL.

Goede V, Fischer K, Busch R, et al.
Obinutuzumab plus chlorambucil in patients with CLL and coexisting conditions.
N Engl J Med. 2014; 370(12):1101-10 [PubMed] Related Publications
BACKGROUND: The monoclonal anti-CD20 antibody rituximab, combined with chemotherapeutic agents, has been shown to prolong overall survival in physically fit patients with previously untreated chronic lymphocytic leukemia (CLL) but not in those with coexisting conditions. We investigated the benefit of the type 2, glycoengineered antibody obinutuzumab (also known as GA101) as compared with that of rituximab, each combined with chlorambucil, in patients with previously untreated CLL and coexisting conditions.
METHODS: We randomly assigned 781 patients with previously untreated CLL and a score higher than 6 on the Cumulative Illness Rating Scale (CIRS) (range, 0 to 56, with higher scores indicating worse health status) or an estimated creatinine clearance of 30 to 69 ml per minute to receive chlorambucil, obinutuzumab plus chlorambucil, or rituximab plus chlorambucil. The primary end point was investigator-assessed progression-free survival.
RESULTS: The patients had a median age of 73 years, creatinine clearance of 62 ml per minute, and CIRS score of 8 at baseline. Treatment with obinutuzumab-chlorambucil or rituximab-chlorambucil, as compared with chlorambucil monotherapy, increased response rates and prolonged progression-free survival (median progression-free survival, 26.7 months with obinutuzumab-chlorambucil vs. 11.1 months with chlorambucil alone; hazard ratio for progression or death, 0.18; 95% confidence interval [CI], 0.13 to 0.24; P<0.001; and 16.3 months with rituximab-chlorambucil vs. 11.1 months with chlorambucil alone; hazard ratio, 0.44; 95% CI, 0.34 to 0.57; P<0.001). Treatment with obinutuzumab-chlorambucil, as compared with chlorambucil alone, prolonged overall survival (hazard ratio for death, 0.41; 95% CI, 0.23 to 0.74; P=0.002). Treatment with obinutuzumab-chlorambucil, as compared with rituximab-chlorambucil, resulted in prolongation of progression-free survival (hazard ratio, 0.39; 95% CI, 0.31 to 0.49; P<0.001) and higher rates of complete response (20.7% vs. 7.0%) and molecular response. Infusion-related reactions and neutropenia were more common with obinutuzumab-chlorambucil than with rituximab-chlorambucil, but the risk of infection was not increased.
CONCLUSIONS: Combining an anti-CD20 antibody with chemotherapy improved outcomes in patients with CLL and coexisting conditions. In this patient population, obinutuzumab was superior to rituximab when each was combined with chlorambucil. (Funded by F. Hoffmann-La Roche; ClinicalTrials.gov number, NCT01010061.).

Millard M, Gallagher JD, Olenyuk BZ, Neamati N
A selective mitochondrial-targeted chlorambucil with remarkable cytotoxicity in breast and pancreatic cancers.
J Med Chem. 2013; 56(22):9170-9 [PubMed] Related Publications
Nitrogen mustards, widely used as chemotherapeutics, have limited safety and efficacy. Mitochondria lack a functional nucleotide excision repair mechanism to repair DNA adducts and are sensitive to alkylating agents. Importantly, cancer cells have higher intrinsic mitochondrial membrane potential (Δψmt) than normal cells. Therefore, selectively targeting nitrogen mustards to cancer cell mitochondria based on Δψmt could overcome those limitations. Herein, we describe the design, synthesis, and evaluation of Mito-Chlor, a triphenylphosphonium derivative of the nitrogen mustard chlorambucil. We show that Mito-Chlor localizes to cancer cell mitochondria where it acts on mtDNA to arrest cell cycle and induce cell death, resulting in a 80-fold enhancement of cell kill in a panel of breast and pancreatic cancer cell lines that are insensitive to the parent drug. Significantly, Mito-Chlor delayed tumor progression in a mouse xenograft model of human pancreatic cancer. This is a first example of repurposing chlorambucil, a drug not used in breast and pancreatic cancer treatment, as a novel drug candidate for these diseases.

Karthik S, Puvvada N, Kumar BN, et al.
Photoresponsive coumarin-tethered multifunctional magnetic nanoparticles for release of anticancer drug.
ACS Appl Mater Interfaces. 2013; 5(11):5232-8 [PubMed] Related Publications
Recently, photoresponsive nanoparticles have received significant attention because of their ability to provide spatial and temporal control over the drug release. In the present work, we report for the first time photoresponsive multifunctional magnetic nanoparticles (MNPs) fabricated using coumarin-based phototrigger and Fe/Si MNPs for controlled delivery of anticancer drug chlorambucil. Further, newly fabricated photoresponsive multifunctional MNPs were also explored for cell luminescence imaging. In vitro biological studies revealed that coumarin tethered Fe/Si MNPs of ~9 nm size efficiently delivered the anticancer drug chlorambucil into cancer cells and thereby improving the drug action to kill the cancer cells upon irradiation. Such multifunctional MNPs with strong fluorescence, good biocompatibility and efficient photocontrolled drug release ability will be of great benefit in the construction of light-activated multifunctional nano drug delivery systems.

Bastien D, Hanna R, Leblanc V, et al.
Synthesis and preliminary in vitro biological evaluation of 7α-testosterone-chlorambucil hybrid designed for the treatment of prostate cancer.
Eur J Med Chem. 2013; 64:442-7 [PubMed] Related Publications
The synthesis of 7α-testosterone-chlorambucil hybrid is reported. This compound is made from testosterone in a 6 step reaction sequence and with 23% overall yield. An alternative convergent reaction sequence yielded the same hybrid through a Grubbs metathesis reaction between chlorambucil allyl ester and 7α-allyltestosterone with 35% overall yield. MTT assays showed that the hybrid is selective towards hormone-dependent prostate cancer cell line (LNCaP (AR+)) and shows similar activity than the parent drug, chlorambucil. Thus, the new hybrid shows promising potential for drug targeting of hormone-dependent prostate cancer through its capacity of delivering chlorambucil directly to the site of treatment. This could extend the use of chlorambucil to prostate cancer in the future.

Mourtada R, Fonseca SB, Wisnovsky SP, et al.
Re-directing an alkylating agent to mitochondria alters drug target and cell death mechanism.
PLoS One. 2013; 8(4):e60253 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
We have successfully delivered a reactive alkylating agent, chlorambucil (Cbl), to the mitochondria of mammalian cells. Here, we characterize the mechanism of cell death for mitochondria-targeted chlorambucil (mt-Cbl) in vitro and assess its efficacy in a xenograft mouse model of leukemia. Using a ρ° cell model, we show that mt-Cbl toxicity is not dependent on mitochondrial DNA damage. We also illustrate that re-targeting Cbl to mitochondria results in a shift in the cell death mechanism from apoptosis to necrosis, and that this behavior is a general feature of mitochondria-targeted Cbl. Despite the change in cell death mechanisms, we show that mt-Cbl is still effective in vivo and has an improved pharmacokinetic profile compared to the parent drug. These findings illustrate that mitochondrial rerouting changes the site of action of Cbl and also alters the cell death mechanism drastically without compromising in vivo efficacy. Thus, mitochondrial delivery allows the exploitation of Cbl as a promiscuous mitochondrial protein inhibitor with promising therapeutic potential.

Blonski JZ, Robak T, Chojnowski K, et al.
Immune thrombocytopenia in patients with chronic lymphocytic leukemia treated with cladribine-based regiments or chlorambucil--follow-up of PALG-CLL randomized trials.
Eur J Haematol. 2013; 91(1):1-9 [PubMed] Related Publications
OBJECTIVES: The relationship between treatments of chronic lymphocytic leukemia (CLL) with cladribine (2-CdA) or chlorambucil and immune thrombocytopenia (IT) has not been yet determined.
METHODS: The records of 777 patients in two randomized Polish Adult Leukemia Group (PALG)-CLL programs treated with these agents were retrospectively analyzed.
RESULTS: Immune thrombocytopenia occurred in 55 of 777 (7.1%) patients. No significant differences in IT prevalence were seen between patients on chlorambucil or 2-CdA-based regiments (P = 0.33). IT developed at a median time of 0.499 yr (0.06-4.8) from the start of CLL therapy. This time was significantly longer in patients treated with chlorambucil (2.03 yr, 95% CI: 0.06-4.22) in relation to patients treated with 2-CdA-based regiments (0.52 yr, 95%CI: 0.34-0.69, P = 0.049). Overall survival (OS) of patients with IT and those without IT were similar (2.65 yr vs. 3.2 yr P = 0.23) but the severity of bleeding was more pronounced in the 2-CdA group. The responses to IT therapy were 35%, 54% and 75% for steroids, chemotherapy and splenectomy, respectively.
CONCLUSIONS: In this study, an unexpectedly high percentage of IT incidence was demonstrated in patients with CLL requiring chemotherapy. Although no marked differences were seen in IT frequency in patients treated with 2-CdA-based regiments compared to chlorambucil regimen, the clinical course of hemorrhagic diathesis was more severe in 2-CdA group. Also, the time elapsed from study screening to IT diagnosis was significantly shorter in the 2-CdA group than in the chlorambucil group suggesting a causative relationship. The appearance of IT did not influence the median time of OS.

Tabasi MA, Amanlou M, Siadat SD, et al.
Novel molecular anti-colorectalcancer conjugate:chlorambucil-adipic acid dihydrizide-glutamine.
Anticancer Agents Med Chem. 2013; 13(9):1449-59 [PubMed] Related Publications
Cancer is one of the most fatal diseases in the world and it has been years that finding new drugs and chemotherapeutic techniques with lowest side effects become one of the most important challenging matters needs really hard efforts. Chlorambucil (CBL), an ancient direct-acting alkylating anticancer agent, is commonly used for initial treatment of some kinds of cancers but the use of CBL is often limited because of the unpleasant side effects due to its lack of specificity for targeting cancer cells. In this research we tried to increase the specificity of CBL by producing a novel conjugate by using glutamine amino acid (Glut). Based on previous studies, poly amines and nitrogen compounds noticeably are used by cancer cells increasingly; therefore we decided to increase the efficiency and specificity of CBL by designing and producing a novel anti cancer conjugate using glutamine amino acid as an uptake enhancer, CBL, and Adipic acid Dihydrazide (ADH) as a spacer and linker. The biological tests were carried out on HT29 colorectal cancer cell line to evaluate its anticancer properties. Biological tests like MTT assay, finding IC50, evaluating the induced mechanism of the death of our novel CBL-Glutamine conjugate on HT29 cells, testing abnormal toxicity of this conjugate on mice in comparison with CBL drug were careid out. We found that not only CBL-Glutamine conjugate preserved its anti cancer property with regard to CBL drug, but also it represent lower abnormal toxicity in mice. Apoptosis was detected as its mechanism of the death. Our present study provides a promising strategy for targeting cancer cells using amino acids nano-conjugate drugs. The future perspectives have also been highlighted in continuing similar and relative researches.

Leblond V, Johnson S, Chevret S, et al.
Results of a randomized trial of chlorambucil versus fludarabine for patients with untreated Waldenström macroglobulinemia, marginal zone lymphoma, or lymphoplasmacytic lymphoma.
J Clin Oncol. 2013; 31(3):301-7 [PubMed] Related Publications
PURPOSE: Treatment options for patients with Waldenström macroglobulinemia (WM) and closely related disorders include alkylating agents, purine analogs, and monoclonal antibodies. No large randomized studies have yet been reported comparing any of these approaches.
PATIENTS AND METHODS: The randomized WM1 study (Trial Comparing Chlorambucil to Fludarabine in Patients With Advanced Waldenström Macroglobulinemia) was undertaken in 101 centers in five countries enrolling 414 eligible patients (339 with WM, 37 with non-mucosa-associated lymphoid tissue marginal zone lymphoma, and 38 with lymphoplasmacytic lymphoma) who were randomly assigned to receive chlorambucil or fludarabine. The primary end point was the overall response rate (ORR).
RESULTS: On the basis of intent-to-treat analysis, the ORR was 47.8% (95% CI, 40.9% to 54.8%) in the fludarabine arm versus 38.6% (95% CI, 32.0% to 45.7%) in the chlorambucil arm (P = .07). With a median follow-up of 36 months (interquartile range, 18 to 58 months), median progression-free survival (PFS), and duration of response (DR) were significantly improved in the fludarabine arm compared with the chlorambucil arm: PFS, 36.3 versus 27.1 months (P = .012) and DR, 38.3 versus 19.9 months (P < .001). In patients with WM, median overall survival (OS) was not reached in the fludarabine arm versus 69.8 months in the chlorambucil arm (95% CI, 61.6 to 79.8 months; P = .014). Grade 3 to 4 neutropenia was significantly higher among patients treated with fludarabine (36%) compared with patients treated with chlorambucil (17.8%; P < .001). Second malignancies were significantly more frequent in the chlorambucil arm with 6-year cumulative incidence rate of 20.6% versus 3.7% in the fludarabine arm (P = .001).
CONCLUSION: In the complete intent-to-treat study population, fludarabine significantly improved PFS compared with chlorambucil, and in patients with WM, it improved OS.

Skowronska A, Parker A, Ahmed G, et al.
Biallelic ATM inactivation significantly reduces survival in patients treated on the United Kingdom Leukemia Research Fund Chronic Lymphocytic Leukemia 4 trial.
J Clin Oncol. 2012; 30(36):4524-32 [PubMed] Related Publications
PURPOSE: The prognostic significance of ATM mutations in chronic lymphocytic leukemia (CLL) is unclear. We assessed their impact in the context of a prospective randomized trial.
PATIENTS AND METHODS: We analyzed the ATM gene in 224 patients treated on the Leukemia Research Fund Chronic Lymphocytic Leukemia 4 (LRF-CLL4) trial with chlorambucil or fludarabine with and without cyclophosphamide. ATM status was analyzed by denaturing high-performance liquid chromatography and was related to treatment response, survival, and the impact of TP53 alterations for the same patient cohort.
RESULTS: We identified 36 ATM mutations in 33 tumors, 16 with and 17 without 11q deletion. Mutations were associated with advanced disease stage and involvement of multiple lymphoid sites. Patients with both ATM mutation and 11q deletion showed significantly reduced progression-free survival (median, 7.4 months) compared with those with ATM wild type (28.6 months), 11q deletion alone (17.1 months), or ATM mutation alone (30.8 months), but survival was similar to that in patients with monoallelic (6.7 months) or biallelic (3.4 months) TP53 alterations. This effect was independent of treatment, immunoglobulin heavy chain variable gene (IGHV) status, age, sex, or disease stage. Overall survival for patients with biallelic ATM alterations was also significantly reduced compared with those with ATM wild type or ATM mutation alone (median, 42.2 v 85.5 v 77.6 months, respectively).
CONCLUSION: The combination of 11q deletion and ATM mutation in CLL is associated with significantly shorter progression-free and overall survival following first-line treatment with alkylating agents and purine analogs. Assessment of ATM mutation status in patients with 11q deletion may influence the choice of subsequent therapy.

Woods B, Hawkins N, Dunlop W, et al.
Bendamustine versus chlorambucil for the first-line treatment of chronic lymphocytic leukemia in England and Wales: a cost-utility analysis.
Value Health. 2012 Jul-Aug; 15(5):759-70 [PubMed] Related Publications
OBJECTIVES: To evaluate the cost-effectiveness of bendamustine compared with chlorambucil as first-line treatment for patients with chronic lymphocytic leukemia who would be considered unsuitable for treatment with fludarabine combination chemotherapy regimens.
METHODS: A semi-Markov approach was used to estimate time in each health state. The model was parameterized primarily by using data from a phase III randomized, open-label trial comparing bendamustine with chlorambucil. It captured the increased progression-free survival and improved response rates with bendamustine, and the cost and quality of life impacts of postprogression treatments. The analysis was conducted from the perspective of the National Health Service in England and Wales. A lifetime (35-year) time horizon was used. Deterministic sensitivity analyses, probabilistic sensitivity analyses, and subgroup analyses in older patients and patients with poor performance status were carried out.
RESULTS: The estimated incremental cost-effectiveness ratio was £ 11,960 per quality-adjusted life-year. None of the deterministic sensitivity analyses increased the incremental cost-effectiveness ratio by more than £ 2000. Subgroup analyses showed that bendamustine remained cost-effective across different patient groups. Probabilistic sensitivity analysis showed that at the £ 20,000 threshold, bendamustine has a 90% probability of being cost-effective.
CONCLUSIONS: Bendamustine represents good value for first-line treatment of patients with chronic lymphocytic leukemia who are unsuitable for treatment with fludarabine combination chemotherapy. The incremental cost-effectiveness ratio is below the thresholds commonly applied in England and Wales (£ 20,000-£ 30,000 per quality-adjusted life-year).

Knauf WU, Lissitchkov T, Aldaoud A, et al.
Bendamustine compared with chlorambucil in previously untreated patients with chronic lymphocytic leukaemia: updated results of a randomized phase III trial.
Br J Haematol. 2012; 159(1):67-77 [PubMed] Related Publications
The efficacy of bendamustine versus chlorambucil in a phase III trial of previously untreated patients with Binet stage B/C chronic lymphocytic leukaemia (CLL) was re-evaluated after a median observation time of 54 months in May 2010. Overall survival (OS) was analysed for the first time. At follow-up, investigator-assessed complete response (CR) rate (21·0% vs 10·8%), median progression-free survival (21·2 vs 8·8 months; P < 0·0001; hazard ratio 2·83) and time to next treatment (31·7 vs 10·1 months; P < 0·0001) were improved for bendamustine over chlorambucil. OS was not different between groups for all patients or those ≤65 years, >65 years, responders and non-responders. However, patients with objective response or a CR experienced a significantly longer OS than non-responders or those without a CR. Significantly more patients on chlorambucil progressed to second/further lines of treatment compared with those on bendamustine (78·3% vs 63·6%; P = 0·004). The benefits of bendamustine over chlorambucil were achieved without reducing quality of life. In conclusion, bendamustine is significantly more effective than chlorambucil in previously untreated CLL patients, with the achievement of a CR or objective response appearing to prolong OS. Bendamustine should be considered as a preferred first-line option over chlorambucil for CLL patients ineligible for fludarabine, cyclophosphamide and rituximab.

Jespersen C, Soragni E, James Chou C, et al.
Chromatin structure determines accessibility of a hairpin polyamide-chlorambucil conjugate at histone H4 genes in pancreatic cancer cells.
Bioorg Med Chem Lett. 2012; 22(12):4068-71 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
We have shown that a specific pyrrole-imidazole polyamide-DNA alkylator (chlorambucil) conjugate, 1R-Chl, alters the growth characteristics of various cancer cell lines in culture, and causes these cells to arrest in the G2/M stage of the cell cycle, without apparent cytotoxicity. This molecule has also shown efficacy in several mouse xenograft models, preventing tumor growth. Previous microarray studies have suggested that members of the histone H4 gene family, H4c and H4j/k, are the primary targets of this molecule, leading to reduced histone mRNA synthesis and growth arrest in cancer cells. In the present study, we examine the effects of 1R-Chl on transcription of other members of the H4 gene family, with the result that mRNA transcription of most genomic copies of H4 are down-regulated by 1R-Chl in a human pancreatic cancer cell line (MIA PaCa-2), but not in a cell line of non-cancerous origin (HEK293 cells). The basis for this differential effect is likely an open chromatin conformation within the H4 genes in cancer cells. Chromatin immunoprecipitation experiments show increased histone acetylation on the histone H4 genes in cancer cells, compared to HEK293 cells, explaining the differential activity of this molecule in cancer versus non-cancer cells.

Pućkowska A, Drozdowska D, Rusak M, et al.
Amino and chlorambucil analogues of pentamidine--synthesis and biological examinations.
Acta Pol Pharm. 2012 Jan-Feb; 69(1):63-73 [PubMed] Related Publications
The amino analogues of pentamidine with a polymethylene (n = 3 - 6) chain and their chlorambucil derivatives were synthesized. The obtained compounds revealed cytotoxic effect on MCF-7 human breast cancer cell line (IC50 = 22 - 95 +/- 2 pM), mainly by the induction of apoptosis. The topoisomerase I/II inhibition assay and the ethidium displacement assay with the use of pBR322 plasmid DNA were used to the study of mechanism by which the obtained compounds could act. All the compounds are able to bind with DNA and interfere in vitro with the activity of topoisomerase (I and II). The determination of association constants with the use of calf thymus DNA, T4 coliphage DNA, poly(dA-dT)2 and poly(dG-dC)2 showed that the tested compounds bind within minor groove of B-DNA, but not selectively. The alkylating activity of chlorambucil derivatives determined in vitro using a Preussmann test was similar to the activity of chlorambucil. The influence of all the compounds on the amidolytic activity of plasmin and trypsin was also examined. The plasmin activity was inhibited by pentamidine, chlorambucil and aromatic bis-amines (IC50 = 0.1 - 8 mM), whereas the trypsin activity was influenced only by pentamidine.

Jana A, Devi KS, Maiti TK, Singh ND
Perylene-3-ylmethanol: fluorescent organic nanoparticles as a single-component photoresponsive nanocarrier with real-time monitoring of anticancer drug release.
J Am Chem Soc. 2012; 134(18):7656-9 [PubMed] Related Publications
We report for the first time the use of perylene-3-ylmethanol fluorescent organic nanoparticles as a drug delivery system. In the present system, perylene-3-ylmethanol nanoparticles performed four important roles: (i) "nanocarriers" for drug delivery; (ii) "phototriggers" for the drug release; (iii) fluorescent chromophores for cell imaging; and (iv) detectors for real time-monitoring of drug release. In vitro biological studies revealed that the newly developed perylene-3-ylmethanol nanoparticles exhibit good biocompatibility and cellular uptake as well as efficient photoregulated anticancer drug release ability. Such fluorescent organic nanoparticles may open up new perspectives for designing a new class of promising photoresponsive nanocarriers for drug delivery.

Wei Z, Yanxia Y, Ying X, et al.
Splenic re-irradiation for waldenstrőm's macroglobulinemia.
Radiat Oncol. 2012; 7:58 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
We report on a case of Waldenström's macroglobulinemia (WM) treated with splenic re-irradiation. To the best of our knowledge this has not been reported before. A 69-year-old Asian female patient with WM received a three-dimensional conformal radiotherapy, with 24 Gy in 12 treatment fractions in the first stage. She tolerated the treatment well, with a 37% reduction of the monoclonal immunoglobulin, an impalpable spleen, and improved hematological laboratory tests for 4 months. She was then treated with splenic re-irradiation up to 24 Gy for tumor progression. She showed no evidence of progression one year after re-irradiation, with a 55% reduction of the monoclonal immunoglobulin. Our experience demonstrates that splenic irradiation is an effective treatment to control the progression of WM.

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