The first control of a malignant tumor in vivo by porphyrin- mediated boron neutron capture therapy (BNCT) is described. In mice bearing implanted EMT-6 mammary carcinomas, boron uptake using a single injection of either p-boronophenylalanine (BPA) or mercaptoundecahydrododecaborane (BSH) was compared with either a single injection or multiple injections of the carboranylporphyrin CuTCPH. The BSH and BPA doses used were comparable to the highest doses of these compounds previously administered in a single injection to rodents. For BNCT, boron concentrations averaged 85 microg (10)B/g in the tumor and 4 microg (10)B/g in blood 2 days after the last of six injections (over 32 h) that delivered a total of 190 microg CuTCPH/g body weight. During a single 15, 20, 25 or 30 MW-min exposure to the thermalized neutron beam of the Brookhaven Medical Research Reactor, a tumor received average absorbed doses of approximately 39, 52, 66 or 79 Gy, respectively. A long-term (>200 days) tumor control rate of 71% was achieved at a dose of 66 Gy with minimal damage to the leg. Equivalent long-term tumor control by a single exposure to 42 Gy X rays was achieved, but with greater damage to the irradiated leg.