Purpose: ERGO2 is the first randomized clinical trial on a calorically restricted ketogenic diet (KD) and intermittent fasting (KD-IF) in addition to reirradiation for recurrent malignant gliomas.
Methods and materials: Fifty patients were randomized 1:1 to reirradiation combined with either a calorically unrestricted diet or KD-IF. The KD-IF schedule included 3 days of KD (21-23 kcal/kg/d), followed by 3 days of fasting and again 3 days of KD. Primary endpoint was progression-free survival (PFS) at 6 months (PFS6). Secondary endpoints were PFS, local PFS, overall survival (OS), frequency of epileptic seizures, rate of ketosis and quality of life.
Results: Four patients quit the trial before treatment and 3 patients stopped KD-IF prematurely. Of the 20 patients who completed KD-IF, 17 patients developed ketosis at day 6 and glucose levels declined significantly. KD-IF was well-tolerated with a modest weight loss of -2.1 ± 1.8 kg. No severe adverse events attributable to the diet occurred. PFS6 was not significantly different between the 2 groups (KD-IF: 20%; calorically unrestricted diet: 16%). Similarly, no difference in PFS, local PFS6, or OS was observable. Explorative analysis revealed that patients in the KD-IF group who had a glucose level of less than the median (83.5 mg/dL) on day 6 had significantly longer PFS and OS compared with those above the median (P < .05).
Conclusions: KD-IF is feasible and effective in inducing ketosis in heavily pretreated patients with recurrent glioma. However, the short schedule reported here failed to increase the efficacy of reirradiation. CLINICALTRIALS.
Gov number: NCT01754350.
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