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      Plitidepsin: design, development, and potential place in therapy

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          Plitidepsin is a cyclic depsipeptide that was first isolated from a Mediterranean marine tunicate ( Aplidium albicans) and, at present, is manufactured by total synthesis and commercialized as Aplidin ®. Its antitumor activity, observed in preclinical in vitro and in vivo studies has prompted numerous clinical trials to be conducted over the last 17 years, alone or in combination with other anticancer agents. Single-agent plitidepsin has shown limited antitumor activity and a tolerable safety profile in several malignancies, such as noncutaneous peripheral T-cell lymphoma, melanoma, and multiple myeloma. In patients with relapsed or refractory multiple myeloma, plitidepsin activity seems to be enhanced after addition of dexamethasone while remaining well tolerated, and a Phase III trial comparing plitidepsin plus dexamethasone vs dexamethasone alone is underway. Additional studies are required to better define the role of plitidepsin in combination with other active agents in these indications. Results of plitidepsin activity in other hematological malignancies or solid tumors have been disappointing so far. Further studies analyzing its mechanisms of action and potential biomarkers will help select patients who may benefit most from this drug. In this review, we critically analyze the published studies on plitidepsin in hematological malignancies and solid tumors and discuss its current role and future perspectives in treating these malignancies. We also review its design, pharmaceutical data, and mechanism of action.

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          Most cited references 47

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          Cremophor EL: the drawbacks and advantages of vehicle selection for drug formulation.

          Cremophor EL (CrEL) is a formulation vehicle used for various poorly-water soluble drugs, including the anticancer agent paclitaxel (Taxol). In contrast to earlier reports, CrEL is not an inert vehicle, but exerts a range of biological effects, some of which have important clinical implications. Its use has been associated with severe anaphylactoid hypersensitivity reactions, hyperlipidaemia, abnormal lipoprotein patterns, aggregation of erythrocytes and peripheral neuropathy. The pharmacokinetic behaviour of CrEL is dose-independent, although its clearance is highly influenced by duration of the infusion. This is particularly important since CrEL can affect the disposition of various drugs by changing the unbound drug concentration through micellar encapsulation. In addition, it has been shown that CrEL, as an integral component of paclitaxel chemotherapy, modifies the toxicity profile of certain anticancer agents given concomitantly, by mechanisms other than kinetic interference. A clear understanding of the biological and pharmacological role of CrEL is essential to help oncologists avoid side-effects associated with the use of paclitaxel or other agents using this vehicle. With the present development of various new anticancer agents, it is recommended that alternative formulation approaches should be pursued to allow a better control of the toxicity of the treatment and the pharmacological interactions related to the use of CrEL.
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            Hypersensitivity reactions from taxol.

            Taxol is an antitumor agent in clinical trial that has been shown to have activity against advanced ovarian carcinoma and melanoma. Hypersensitivity reactions (HSRs) have been one of the toxicities observed with administration of this drug. Of 301 patients treated, 32 patients have had definite (27 patients) or possible (five patients) hypersensitivity reactions to taxol. All but one patient had the reaction from the first or second exposure to this agent. Reactions occurred at a variety of doses and were characterized most frequently by dyspnea, hypotension, bronchospasm, urticaria, and erythematous rashes. Thirteen (41%) patients had received premedication designed to prevent such toxicity; nevertheless, they sustained HSRs. Prolonging the drug infusion appears to have somewhat reduced, but not obviated, the risk of HSRs. The cause (taxol itself or its excipient Cremophor EL; Badische Anilin und Soda-Fabrik AG [BASF], Ludwigshafen, Federal Republic of Germany) and the mechanism of these reactions to taxol are unknown. We provide guidelines to prevent or minimize such toxicity and treat reactions if they still occur.
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              Aplidin, a marine organism-derived compound with potent antimyeloma activity in vitro and in vivo.

              Despite recent progress in its treatment, multiple myeloma (MM) remains incurable, thus necessitating identification of novel anti-MM agents. We report that the marine-derived cyclodepsipeptide Aplidin exhibits, at clinically achievable concentrations, potent in vitro activity against primary MM tumor cells and a broad spectrum of human MM cell lines, including cells resistant to conventional (e.g., dexamethasone, alkylating agents, and anthracyclines) or novel (e.g., thalidomide and bortezomib) anti-MM agents. Aplidin is active against MM cells in the presence of proliferative/antiapoptotic cytokines or bone marrow stromal cells and has additive or synergistic effects with some of the established anti-MM agents. Mechanistically, a short in vitro exposure to Aplidin induces MM cell death, which involves activation of p38 and c-jun NH(2)-terminal kinase signaling, Fas/CD95 translocation to lipid rafts, and caspase activation. The anti-MM effect of Aplidin is associated with suppression of a constellation of proliferative/antiapoptotic genes (e.g., MYC, MYBL2, BUB1, MCM2, MCM4, MCM5, and survivin) and up-regulation of several potential regulators of apoptosis (including c-JUN, TRAIL, CASP9, and Smac). Aplidin exhibited in vivo anti-MM activity in a mouse xenograft model. The profile of the anti-MM activity of Aplidin in our preclinical models provided the framework for its clinical testing in MM, which has already provided favorable preliminary results.

                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
                19 January 2017
                : 11
                : 253-264
                [1 ]Hematology Department, IBSAL-CIC-USAL, Hospital Universitario de Salamanca, Salamanca, Spain
                [2 ]Hematology Department, Hospital Virgen del Puerto, Plasencia, Spain
                [3 ]Pharmacy Department, Hospital Universitario de Salamanca, Salamanca, Spain
                [4 ]Oncology Department, Hospital Universitario de Salamanca, IBSAL, Salamanca, Spain
                Author notes
                Correspondence: Alejandro Martín; Maria Victoria Mateos, Department of Hematology, University Hospital of Salamanca, Paseo de San Vicente, 58-182, Salamanca, 37007, Spain, Tel +34 923 291 100 ext 55384, Fax +34 923 294 624, Email amartingar@ 123456usal.es ; mvmateos@ 123456usal.es
                © 2017 Alonso-Álvarez 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

                melanoma, aplidin, myeloma, lymphoma, plitidepsin


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