Protein kinase C (PKC) is an attractive target in cancer therapy. It is overexpressed in a variety of cancers, and nonspecific inhibitors of PKC have demonstrated antitumor activity. Antisense oligonucleotides targeted against PKC-alpha, which have high specificity, can inhibit mRNA and protein expression as well as the growth of tumors in vitro and in vivo. This Phase I study sought to characterize the safety profile and to determine the maximum tolerated dose of antisense to PKC-alpha when administered by continuous infusion in patients. Patients with incurable malignancies received ISIS 3521, a 20-length phosphorothioate oligodeoxynucleotide specific for PKC-alpha. Treatment was delivered over a period of 21 days by continuous i.v. infusion followed by a 7-day rest period. Doses were increased from 0.5 to 3.0 mg/kg/day. Patients continued on the study until evidence of disease progression or unacceptable toxicity was detected. Between August 1996 and September 1997, 21 patients were treated in five patient cohorts. The maximum tolerated dose was 2.0 mg/kg/day. The dose-limiting toxicities were thrombocytopenia and fatigue at a dose of 3.0 mg/kg/day. Pharmacokinetic measurements showed rapid plasma clearance and dose-dependent steady-state concentrations of ISIS 3521. Evidence of tumor response lasting up to 11 months was observed in three of four patients with ovarian cancer. The recommended dose of ISIS 3521 for Phase II studies is 2.0 mg/kg/day when given over a period of 21 days. Side effects are modest and consist of thrombocytopenia and fatigue. Evidence of antitumor activity provides the rationale for Phase II studies in ovarian cancer and other malignancies.
View details for Web of Science ID 000083853200005
View details for PubMedID 10589745