Bioavailablility of penclomedine and systemic exposure to 4-O-demethylpenclomedine in patients receiving oral and intravenous penclomedine

Seamus O'Reilly, Neil R. Hartman, Katherine M. Bowling, Eric K. Rowinsky, Ross C. Donehower, J. Collins, J. M. Strong

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Purpose: Oral administration of penclomedine was investigated based on preclinical studies indicating that an oral schedule of penclomedine treatment may prevent the neurotoxicity observed in phase I studies of an intravenous (i.v.) formulation, possibly by reducing maximum plasma concentrations (Cmax) of the neurotoxic parent species. Methods: Penclomedine was administered i.v. (200 mg/m2) and orally (250 mg/m2) in alternate sequences to patients with solid tumor malignancies. Plasma concentrations of parent drug and the principal metabolite, 4-O-demethylpenclomedine, were determined by a reversed-phase HPLC assay. Results: Penclomedine was detectable in the plasma of all patients within 1 h of oral penclomedine treatment and Cmax was reached within 1 to 4 h. Consistent with the hypothesis that an oral schedule of administration may circumvent neurotoxicity, a paired data analysis demonstrated a significant reduction in Cmax values following oral administration (P = 0.017). However the magnitude of this reduction was highly variable. Similarly an extensive range in the relative exposure to both parent drug and metabolite were observed. The bioavailability of penclomedine ranged from 28% to 98% (median 73%). Conclusions: Oral penclomedine does produce systemic exposure, but substantial interpatient variability in absorption and systemic exposure is present which may limit the clinical role of the oral route of administration.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)223-228
Number of pages6
JournalCancer Chemotherapy and Pharmacology
Issue number3
StatePublished - 2001


  • 4-O-demethyl penclomedine
  • Antitumor
  • Clinical trial
  • Penclomedine
  • Pharmacokinetics

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Oncology
  • Toxicology
  • Pharmacology
  • Cancer Research
  • Pharmacology (medical)


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