Phase I and pharmacokinetic study of veliparib, a PARP inhibitor, and pegylated liposomal doxorubicin (PLD) in recurrent gynecologic cancer and triple negative breast cancer with long-term follow-up

Bhavana Pothuri, Allison L. Brodsky, Joseph A. Sparano, Stephanie V. Blank, Mimi Kim, Dawn L. Hershman, Amy Tiersten, Brian F. Kiesel, Jan H. Beumer, Leonard Liebes, Franco Muggia

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle


Objective: Poly(ADP-ribosyl) polymerases (PARPs) are nuclear enzymes with roles in DNA damage recognition and repair. PARP1 inhibition enhances the effects of DNA-damaging agents like doxorubicin. We sought to determine the recommended phase two dose (RP2D) of veliparib with pegylated liposomal doxorubicin (PLD) in breast and recurrent gynecologic cancer patients. Methods: Veliparib and PLD were administered in a standard phase 1, 3 + 3 dose-escalation design starting at 50 mg veliparib BID on days 1–14 with PLD 40 mg/mg2 on day 1 of a 28-day cycle. Dose escalation proceeded in two strata: A (prior PLD exposure) and B (no prior PLD exposure). Patients underwent limited pharmacokinetic (PK) sampling; an expansion PK cohort was added. Results: 44 patients with recurrent ovarian or triple negative breast cancer were enrolled. Median age 56 years; 23 patients BRCA mutation carriers; median prior regimens four. Patients received a median of four cycles of veliparib/PLD. Grade 3/4 toxicities were observed in 10% of patients. Antitumor activity was observed in both sporadic and BRCA-deficient cancers. Two BRCA mutation carriers had complete responses. Two BRCA patients developed oral squamous cell cancers after completing this regimen. PLD exposure was observed to be higher when veliparib doses were > 200 mg BID. Conclusions: The RP2D is 200 mg veliparib BID on days 1–14 with 40 mg/m2 PLD on day 1 of a 28-day cycle. Anti-tumor activity was seen in both strata. However, given development of long-term squamous cell cancers and the PK interaction observed, efforts should focus on other targeted combinations to improve efficacy.

Original languageEnglish (US)
JournalCancer Chemotherapy and Pharmacology
StateAccepted/In press - Jan 1 2020


ASJC Scopus subject areas

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

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