Multicenter phase II clinical trial of arsenic trioxide injection in the treatment of primary hepatocarcinoma

Feng Lian Qu, Xue Zhi Hao, Shu Kui Qin, Ji Wei Liu, Guang Jie Sui, Qiang Chen, Too Qu, He Ping Zhang, Yan Sun

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11 Scopus citations


Objective: To evaluate the effect and adverse effects of arsenic trioxide (As2O3) in the treatment of primary hepatocarcinoma patients, and conduct the pharmacokinetics study. Methods: A total of one hundred and eleven advanced primary hepatocarcinoma patients in five centers were treated with As2O3 injection 7-8 mg/m2 i. v. qd for 14 days and was repeated after 7-14 days. Evaluation of the clinical response and adverse effects was conducted after two cycles of treatment. The patient who had reached partial PR and SD was treated continuously until disease progression or intolerance. Results: Among the 102 patients evaluable for clinical efficacy analysis, there were 7 PR, 71 SD and 24 PD, the response rate was 6.9% and the clinical benefit rate was 76.5%. The quality of life was improved in 22.5% of patients. The pain relief rate was 71.7%, time to progress (TTP) was 97 days, and the median survival time (MST) was 195 days. The major adverse effects were reversible WHO I-II grade gastrointestinal reactions and bone marrow suppression. The results of pharmacokinetic study showed that the distribution and elimination characteristics in vivo was found to be a two-compartment model. The plasma elimination half-life was (23.94 ± 18.39) h. Conclusions: As2O3 is effective in the management of primary hepatocarcinoma, with a significant analgesic effect. To some extent, it can extend TTP and MST in advanced liver cancer patients, while the treatment is well tolerated in the majority of patients.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)697-701
Number of pages5
JournalZhonghua zhong liu za zhi [Chinese journal of oncology]
Issue number9
StatePublished - Sep 2011
Externally publishedYes


  • Arsenic trioxide injection
  • Liver neoplasms
  • Pharmacokinetics
  • Treatment outcome


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