Purpose: This study was designed to test the short-term toxicity of DHA-dFdC in a mouse model and its efficacy in a mouse model of leukemia at or below its repeat-dose maximum tolerated dose (RD-MTD).
Method: A repeat-dose dose-ranging toxicity study was designed to determine the tolerability of DHA-dFdC when administered to DBA/2 mice by intravenous (i.v.) injection on a repeat-dose schedule (i.e. injections on days 0, 3, 7, 10, and 13). In order to determine the effect of a lethal dose of DHA-dFdC, mice were injected i.v. with three doses of DHA-dFdC at 100 mg/kg on days 0, 3, and 5 (i.e. a lethal-RD). The body weight of mice was recorded two or three times a week. At the end of the study, major organs (i.e. heart, liver, spleen, kidneys, lung, and pancreas) of mice that received the lethal-RD or RD-MTD were weighed, and blood samples were collected for analyses. Finally, DHA-dFdC was i.v. injected into DBA/2 mice with syngeneic L1210 mouse leukemia cells to evaluate its efficacy at or below RD-MTD.
Results: The RD-MTD of DHA-dFdC is 50 mg/kg. At 100 mg/kg, a lethal-RD, DHA-dFdC decreases the weights of mouse spleen and liver and significantly affected certain blood parameters (i.e. white blood cells, lymphocytes, eosinophils, and neutrophil segmented). At or below its RD-MTD, DHA-dFdC significantly prolonged the survival of L1210 leukemia-bearing mice.
Conclusion: DHA-dFdC has dose-dependent toxicity, affecting mainly spleen at a lethal-RD. At or below its RD-MTD, DHA-dFdC is effective against leukemia in a mouse model.
Keywords: DHA; efficacy; gemcitabine; lethal-repeated dose; leukemia; repeat dose-maximum tolerated dose.