First-in-human phase I clinical trial of pharmacologic ascorbate combined with radiation and temozolomide for newly diagnosed glioblastoma

Bryan G. Allen, Kellie L. Bodeker, Mark C. Smith, Varun Monga, Sonia Sandhu, Raymond Hohl, Thomas Carlisle, Heather Brown, Nancy Hollenbeck, Sandy Vollstedt, Jeremy D. Greenlee, Matthew A. Howard, Kranti A. Mapuskar, Steven N. Seyedin, Joseph M. Caster, Karra A. Jones, Joseph J. Cullen, Daniel Berg, Brett A. Wagner, Garry R. BuettnerMindi J. TenNapel, Brian J. Smith, Douglas R. Spitz, John M. Buatti

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

51 Scopus citations


Purpose: Standard treatment for glioblastoma (GBM) includes surgery, radiation therapy (RT), and temozolomide (TMZ), yielding a median overall survival (OS) of approximately 14 months. Preclinical models suggest that pharmacologic ascorbate (P-AscH-) enhances RT/TMZ antitumor effect in GBM. We evaluated the safety of adding P-AscH- to standard RT/TMZ therapy. Patients and Methods: This first-in-human trial was divided into an RT phase (concurrent RT/TMZ/P-AscH-) and an adjuvant (ADJ) phase (post RT/TMZ/P-AscH- phase). Eight P-AscH- dose cohorts were evaluated in the RT phase until targeted plasma ascorbate levels were achieved (≥20 mmol/L). In the ADJ phase, P-AscH- doses were escalated in each subject at each cycle until plasma concentrations were ≥20 mmol/L. P-AscH- was infused 3 times weekly during the RT phase and 2 times weekly during the ADJ phase continuing for six cycles or until disease progression. Adverse events were quantified by CTCAE (v4.03). Results: Eleven subjects were evaluable. No dose-limiting toxicities occurred. Observed toxicities were consistent with historical controls. Adverse events related to study drug were dry mouth and chills. Targeted ascorbate plasma levels of 20 mmol/L were achieved in the 87.5 g cohort; diminishing returns were realized in higher dose cohorts. Median progression-free survival (PFS) was 9.4 months and median OS was 18 months. In subjects with undetectable MGMT promoter methylation (n ¼ 8), median PFS was 10 months and median OS was 23 months. Conclusions: P-AscH-/RT/TMZ is safe with promising clinical outcomes warranting further investigation.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)6590-6597
Number of pages8
JournalClinical Cancer Research
Issue number22
StatePublished - Nov 15 2019

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Oncology
  • Cancer Research


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