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Contemp Clin Trials Commun. 2019 Apr 10;14:100361. doi: 10.1016/j.conctc.2019.100361. eCollection 2019 Jun.

Single arm phase II trial assessing the safety, compliance with and activity of Bezafibrate and medroxyProgesterone acetate (BaP) therapy against myeloid and lymphoid cancers.

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Queen Elizabeth Hospital Birmingham, University Hospital Birmingham NHS Foundation Trust, UK.
Heartlands Hospital, University Hospital Birmingham NHS Foundation Trust, UK.
New Cross Hospital, The Royal Wolverhampton Hospitals Trust, UK.
Worcestershire Royal Hospital, Worcestershire Acute Hospitals NHS Trust, UK.
Cancer Research UK Clinical Trials Unit, Birmingham, UK.
School of Biosciences, University of Birmingham, UK.
Institute of Immunology and Immunotherapy, University of Birmingham, UK.


We previously reported the safety and efficacy of low dose BaP [Bezafibrate (Bez) and Medroxyprogesterone acetate (MPA)] in 20 acute myeloid leukaemia (AML) patients for whom chemotherapy was not an option. This study provided evidence that BaP had anti-AML activity and improved haemopoiesis; absence of haematological toxicity allowed continuous daily administration. Similarly a previous trial in endemic Burkitt lymphoma demonstrated anti-B cell lymphoma activity of low and high dose BaP again in the absence of toxicity. We conducted a study to further evaluate the safety and activity of high dose BaP therapy in adults with AML (and high risk Myelodysplastic Syndromes (MDS)), chronic lymphocytic leukaemia (CLL) or B-cell Non-Hodgkin Lymphoma (BHNL). Eighteen patients were recruited to the study over 20 months, 16 AML/MDS, 1 CLL, and 1 BNHL. Although MPA was well tolerated throughout the study, only 2 patients were able to tolerate Bez treatment for their whole trial duration, indicating that Bez escalation is not feasible in the setting of adult AML/MDS. Thus there has been no obvious benefit in improved haemopoiesis or overt anti-leukaemia activity from the attempts to escalate BaP dose over previous published studies. Since current therapeutic options in MDS are restricted it may be now of value to continue to evaluate low dose BaP based approaches in low risk MDS rather than AML/high risk MDS. Furthermore, screening of low dose BaP against libraries of other already available dugs may identify an addition to BaP that augments the anti-neoplastic efficacy without significant toxicity.


Bezafibrate; Clinical trials; Lymphoid malignancies; Myeloid leukaemia; Progesterone; Therapy

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