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Int J Radiat Oncol Biol Phys. 2002 May 1;53(1):164-71.

Enhancement of radiation therapy by the novel vascular targeting agent ZD6126.

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Department of Radiation Oncology, Shands Cancer Center, University of Florida, 2000 SW Archer Road, Box 100385, Gainesville, FL 32610, USA.



The aim of this study was to evaluate the antitumor efficacy of the novel vascular targeting agent ZD6126 (N-acetylcochinol-O-phosphate) in the rodent KHT sarcoma model, either alone or in combination with single- or fractionated-dose radiation therapy.


C3H/HeJ mice bearing i.m. KHT tumors were injected i.p. with ZD6126 doses ranging from 10 to 150 mg/kg. Tumors were irradiated locally in unanesthetized mice using a linear accelerator. Tumor response to ZD6126 administered alone or in combination with radiation was assessed by clonogenic cell survival assay or tumor growth delay.


Treatment with ZD6126 led to a rapid tumor vascular shutdown as determined by Hoechst 33342 diffusion. Histologic evaluation showed morphologic damage of tumor cells within a few hours after drug exposure, followed by extensive central tumor necrosis and neoplastic cell death as a result of prolonged ischemia. When combined with radiation, a 150 mg/kg dose of ZD6126 reduced tumor cell survival 10-500-fold compared with radiation alone. These enhancements in tumor cell killing could be achieved for ZD6126 given both before and after radiation exposure. Further, the shape of the cell survival curve observed after the combination therapy suggested that including ZD6126 in the treatment had a major effect on the radiation-resistant hypoxic cell subpopulation associated with this tumor. Finally, when given on a once-weekly basis in conjunction with fractionated radiotherapy, ZD6126 treatment was found to significantly increase the tumor response to daily 2.5 Gy fractions.


The present results demonstrated that in the KHT sarcoma, ZD6126 caused rapid tumor vascular shutdown, induction of central tumor necrosis, tumor cell death secondary to ischemia, and enhancement of the antitumor effects of radiation therapy.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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