Vosaroxin is a first-in-class anticancer quinolone derivative that intercalates DNA and inhibits topoisomerase II. This study assessed the safety and tolerability of vosaroxin plus cytarabine in patients with relapsed/refractory acute myeloid leukemia. Escalating vosaroxin doses (10-minute infusion; 10-90 mg/m2; days 1, 4) were given in combination with cytarabine on one of two schedules: schedule A (24-hour continuous intravenous infusion, 400 mg/m2/day, days 1-5) or schedule B (2-hour intravenous infusion, 1 g/m2/day, days 1-5). Following dose escalation, enrollment was expanded at the maximum tolerated dose. Of 110 patients enrolled, 108 received treatment. The maximum tolerated dose of vosaroxin was 80 mg/m2 for schedule A (dose-limiting toxicities: grade 3 bowel obstruction and stomatitis) and was not reached for schedule B (recommended phase 2 dose: 90 mg/m2). In the efficacy population (all patients in first relapse or with primary refractory disease treated with vosaroxin 80-90 mg/m2; n=69), the complete remission rate was 25% and the complete remission/complete remission with incomplete blood count recovery rate was 28%. The 30-day all-cause mortality rate was 2.5% among all patients treated at a dose of 80-90 mg/m2. Based upon these results, a phase 3 trial of vosaroxin plus cytarabine was initiated in patients with relapsed/refractory acute myeloid leukemia.
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