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      Clinical potential of mechlorethamine gel for the topical treatment of mycosis fungoides-type cutaneous T-cell lymphoma: a review on current efficacy and safety data


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          Nitrogen mustard is a chemotherapeutic agent that has a well-documented safety and efficacy profile in the treatment of cutaneous T-cell lymphoma. Development of nitrogen mustard formulations and treatment regimens has been studied extensively over the last 40 years. In the last 5 years, a new gel formulation has been developed that is associated with a decrease in delayed hypersensitivity reactions. The authors in this review found that while the gel formulation may result in a decrease of allergic contact dermatitis, this advantage has been replaced by a higher number of irritant contact reactions and a decrease in complete response rate. The gel formulation has a complete response rate of 13.8%, which is a decrease in efficacy when compared to aqueous-based preparations of similar concentrations.

          Most cited references20

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          Revisions to the staging and classification of mycosis fungoides and Sezary syndrome: a proposal of the International Society for Cutaneous Lymphomas (ISCL) and the cutaneous lymphoma task force of the European Organization of Research and Treatment of Cancer (EORTC).

          The ISCL/EORTC recommends revisions to the Mycosis Fungoides Cooperative Group classification and staging system for cutaneous T-cell lymphoma (CTCL). These revisions are made to incorporate advances related to tumor cell biology and diagnostic techniques as pertains to mycosis fungoides (MF) and Sézary syndrome (SS) since the 1979 publication of the original guidelines, to clarify certain variables that currently impede effective interinstitution and interinvestigator communication and/or the development of standardized clinical trials in MF and SS, and to provide a platform for tracking other variables of potential prognostic significance. Moreover, given the difference in prognosis and clinical characteristics of the non-MF/non-SS subtypes of cutaneous lymphoma, this revision pertains specifically to MF and SS. The evidence supporting the revisions is discussed as well as recommendations for evaluation and staging procedures based on these revisions.
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            Topical chemotherapy in cutaneous T-cell lymphoma: positive results of a randomized, controlled, multicenter trial testing the efficacy and safety of a novel mechlorethamine, 0.02%, gel in mycosis fungoides.

            To evaluate the efficacy and safety of a novel mechlorethamine hydrochloride, 0.02%, gel in mycosis fungoides. DESIGN Randomized, controlled, observer-blinded, multicenter trial comparing mechlorethamine, 0.02%, gel with mechlorethamine, 0.02%, compounded ointment. Mechlorethamine was applied once daily for up to 12 months. Tumor response and adverse events were assessed every month between months 1 and 6 and every 2 months between months 7 and 12. Serum drug levels were evaluated in a subset of patients.
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              Long-term efficacy, curative potential, and carcinogenicity of topical mechlorethamine chemotherapy in cutaneous T cell lymphoma.

              Complete responses lasting from 4 to 14 years were documented in 65 of 331 (20%) patients with cutaneous T cell lymphoma treated with topical mechlorethamine (HN2) between 1968 and 1982. Such long-lasting remissions occurred most often, but not invariably, in patients with patch or plaque phase mycosis fungoides without palpable lymphadenopathy (stage Ia or Ib). The likelihood of a continuous remission was enhanced by initiation of treatment before an unequivocal pathologic diagnosis. Despite the long-lasting responses in these patients, however, relapses have been documented in 11 (17%) of these patients, and all relapses occurred within 8 years of discontinuing maintenance topical chemotherapy. Thus, in our experience, a continuous remission lasting 8 or more years provides evidence that cutaneous T cell lymphoma can be eradicated by aggressive topical chemotherapy. This circumstance was observed in 35 patients, representing a cure rate of at least 11% overall. In addition, when compared with the general population of the United States, patients who received topical HN2 were at an 8.6-fold and a 1.8-fold increased risk for the development of squamous cell carcinoma and enhanced for Hodgkin's disease and colon cancer but not for systemic cancers known to be induced by systemic administration of alkylating drugs. These results compare favorably with experiences with topical HN2 chemotherapy at other centers but raise questions about the risks associated with long-term administration for maintenance of remissions.

                Author and article information

                Drug Des Devel Ther
                Drug Des Devel Ther
                Drug Design, Development and Therapy
                Drug Design, Development and Therapy
                Dove Medical Press
                31 January 2018
                : 12
                : 241-254
                [1 ]Division of Dermatology, Medical College of Georgia at Augusta Health, Augusta, GA, USA
                [2 ]School of Medicine, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, Carolinas Medical Center, Charlotte, NC, USA
                [3 ]Department of Hematology/Oncology, Levine Cancer Institute, Carolinas Medical Center, Charlotte, NC, USA
                Author notes
                Correspondence: Laura Y McGirt, Levine Cancer Institute, Ste 300, 1021 Morehead Medical Drive, Suite A, Charlotte, NC 28204, USA, Tel +1 980 442 6367, Fax +1 980 442 6321, Email laura.y.mcgirt@ 123456carolinashealthcare.org
                © 2018 Liner et al. This work is published and licensed by Dove Medical Press Limited

                The full terms of this license are available at https://www.dovepress.com/terms.php and incorporate the Creative Commons Attribution – Non Commercial (unported, v3.0) License ( http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc/3.0/). By accessing the work you hereby accept the Terms. Non-commercial uses of the work are permitted without any further permission from Dove Medical Press Limited, provided the work is properly attributed.


                Pharmacology & Pharmaceutical medicine
                mycosis fungoides,nitrogen mustard,mechlorethamine gel,cutaneous t-cell lymphoma,ctcl,valchlor®


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