PURPOSE - To determine the safety and tolerability of adenovirus-mediated p53 (Adp53) gene transfer in sequence with cisplatin when given by intratumor injection in patients with non-small-cell lung cancer (NSCLC).
PATIENTS AND METHODS - Patients with advanced NSCLC and abnormal p53 function were enrolled onto cohorts receiving escalating dose levels of Adp53 (1 x 10(6) to 1 x 10(11) plaque-forming units [PFU]). Patients were administered intravenous cisplatin 80 mg/m(2) on day 1 and study vector on day 4 for a total of up to six courses (28 days per course). Apoptosis was determined by the terminal deoxynucleotidyl- transferase-dUTP nick-end labeling assay. Evidence of vector-specific sequences were determined using reverse-transcriptase polymerase chain reaction. Vector dissemination and biodistribution was monitored using a series of assays (cytopathic effects assay, Ad5 hexon enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay, vector-specific polymerase chain reaction assay, and antibody response assay).
RESULTS - Twenty-four patients (median age, 64 years) received a total of 83 intratumor injections with Adp53. The maximum dose administered was 1 x 10(11) PFU per dose. Transient fever related to Adp53 injection developed in eight of 24 patients. Seventeen patients achieved a best clinical response of stable disease, two patients achieved a partial response, four patients had progressive disease, and one patient was not assessable. A mean apoptotic index between baseline and follow-up measurements increased from 0.010 to 0.044 (P =.011). Intratumor transgene mRNA was identified in 43% of assessable patients.
CONCLUSION - Intratumoral injection with Adp53 in combination with cisplatin is well tolerated, and there is evidence of clinical activity.