The carborane-containing porphyrin, copper (II) 2,3,7,8,12,13,17,18-octabromo-5,10,15,20-tetrakis(3-[1,2-dicarba-closo-dodecaboranyl]methoxyphenyl)-porphyrin (CuTCPBr), was investigated as a potential radiation enhancing agent for X-ray radiotherapy (XRT) in a subcutaneously implanted EMT-6 murine carcinoma.
The biodistribution and toxicological profile of this porphyrin has been shown to be favourable for another bimodal radiotherapy technique, boron neutron-capture therapy. For the XRT studies, CuTCPBr was formulated in either 9% Cremophor® (BASF Corporation, Ludwigschafen, Germany) EL and 18% propylene glycol (9% CRM) or a revised formulation comprising 1% Cremophor ELP, 2% Tween 80® (JT Baker, Mansfield, MA), 5% ethanol and 2.2% PEG 400 (CTEP formulation), which would be more clinically acceptable than the original 9% CRM formulation. Using the 9% CRM formulation of CuTCPBr, doses of 100, 210 or 400 mg kg−1 of body weight were used in combination with single doses of 25–35 Gy 100 kVp X-rays.
While doses of 100 mg kg−1 and 210 mg kg−1 did not result in any significant enhancement of tumour response, the 400 mg kg−1 dose did. A dose modification factor of 1.20±0.10 was obtained based on the comparison of doses that produced a 50% local tumour control probability. With the CTEP formulation of CuTCPBr, doses of 83 and 170 mg kg−1 produced significant radiation enhancement, with dose modification factors based on the TCP50 of 1.29±0.15 and 1.84±0.24, respectively.
CuTCPBr significantly enhanced the efficacy of XRT in the treatment of EMT-6 carcinomas in mice. The CTEP formulation showed a marked improvement, with over 9% CRM being associated with higher dose modification factors. Moreover, the radiation response in the skin was not enhanced.