Efficacy of intratumoral delivery of mitoxantrone in recurrent malignant glial tumours

J Neurooncol. 2001 Aug;54(1):39-47. doi: 10.1023/a:1012510513780.


Ninety-nine patients bearing recurrent malignant glioma sequentially selected according to strict eligibility criteria (72 GBL and 27 AA) entered the study. All patients were previously managed with radiotherapy 60 Gy total dose and chemotherapy with nitrosoureas and platinum compounds. At recurrence they were subdivided in homogeneous groups, all treated with the same systemic chemotherapy protocol: 27 GBL (group A) only systemically treated, 20 GBL (group B) treated also locally by delivering 4mg of mitoxantrone every 20 days through the Ommaya reservoire, and 25 GBL (group C) treated with a second surgery and locally as group B. Of the AA group, 13/27 were treated locally trough the Ommaya reservoir after repeat surgery. A trend to different demographic features among subgroups (with locoregionally treated patients and patients undergoing repeat surgery being younger than the others) was seen in this non-randomized study, but this was not statistically significant. Median overall survival was 27, 26 and 15.5 months respectively for groups c, b and a (log-rank = 0.1). After tumor recurrence median survival was 16.8, 12 and 6.6 months respectively for groups c, b and a (log-rank = 0.001) For the 29 AA, overall survival was 48.5 and 100 months (log-rank = 0.03) if treated locally with second tumor debulking. Our results stress the opinion that a second operation could be indicated only if it is a part of a therapeutic protocol to allow a locoregional treatment. Moreover we can finally assume that local delivery of chemotherapy after tumor recurrence, possibly extends patients survival but certainly improves the number of long-survivors.

Publication types

  • Clinical Trial

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Antineoplastic Agents / adverse effects
  • Antineoplastic Agents / therapeutic use*
  • Brain Neoplasms / drug therapy*
  • Brain Neoplasms / pathology
  • Female
  • Glioma / drug therapy*
  • Glioma / pathology
  • Humans
  • Magnetic Resonance Imaging
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Mitoxantrone / adverse effects
  • Mitoxantrone / therapeutic use*
  • Neoplasm Recurrence, Local / drug therapy*
  • Neoplasm Recurrence, Local / pathology
  • Survival Analysis
  • Tomography, X-Ray Computed


  • Antineoplastic Agents
  • Mitoxantrone