Author(s): Westphal M, Ram Z, Riddle V, Hilt D, Bortey E Executive Comm
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Abstract OBJECTIVE: Adjuvant systemic chemotherapy increases survival of primary malignant glioma patients beyond 12-18 months. The only interstitial chemotherapy treatment approved for malignant glioma is Gliadel wafer containing carmustine (BCNU) placed in the resection cavity at surgery. Analysis of a large trial by Westphal and colleagues (n = 240) showed a 29\% risk reduction (P = 0.03) in the BCNU wafer-treated group over the course of the 30-month trial. Long-term follow-up of these patients was undertaken to determine the survival benefit at 2 and 3 years. METHODS: Survival proportions for the placebo and treatment groups over the 56-month study were estimated by the Kaplan-Meier method. Multiple-regression analyses using the Cox proportional hazards model included prognostic factors of age, KPS, and tumor type. A secondary analysis was conducted for 207 GBM patients. RESULTS: Of the 59 patients available for long-term follow-up, 11 were alive at 56 months: 9 had received BCNU wafers and 2 had received placebo wafers. Median survival of patients treated with BCNU wafers was 13.8 months vs 11.6 months in placebo-treated patients (P = 0.017) with a hazard ratio of 0.73 (P = 0.018), representing a 27\% significant risk reduction. This survival advantage was maintained at 1, 2, and 3 years and was statistically significant (P = 0.01) at 3 years. Two of 207 GBM patients remained alive at the end of the follow-up period, both in the BCNU wafer-treated group. CONCLUSION: Malignant glioma patients treated with BCNU wafers at the time of initial surgery in combination with radiation therapy demonstrated a survival advantage at 2 and 3 years follow-up compared with placebo.
This article was published in Acta Neurochir (Wien)
and referenced in Journal of Nanomedicine & Biotherapeutic Discovery