Last year in the UK over 60,000 cancer patients enrolled on clinical trials aimed at improving cancer treatments and making them available to all.
A trial of temozolomide for children with neuroblastoma that has come back after treatment (NAG 2003 02)
This trial was looking at the chemotherapy drug temozolomide for children with neuroblastoma.
Temozolomide is a chemotherapy drug that doctors use to treat some forms of brain tumour in adults (such as glioma). The researchers think temozolomide may be useful for treating children with neuroblastoma.
The aim of this trial was to see how well temozolomide worked for children with neuroblastoma that had not responded to treatment, or that had come back after treatment.
Summary of results
The trial team found that temozolomide helped some children with neuroblastoma that had not responded to treatment or had come back after treatment.
All the children had temozolomide. They had 5 days of temozolomide every 28 days. Each 28 day period is called a cycle of treatment. Each child had up to 12 cycles of treatment over 12 months.
The trial team were able to analyse the results of 25 children. Of these 25, 10 had responded to temozolomide. The trial team found that
- In 5 children the neuroblastoma got smaller – this is called a
partial response, 1 of which was a very good partial response
- In 2 children the neuroblastoma showed signs of getting smaller – the researchers called this an objective response
- In 3 children where the neuroblastoma had spread to other parts of the body these areas had got smaller – the researchers called this a mixed response
The main side effects were a drop in blood cells and infection.
The trial team concluded that temozolomide could work for children with neuroblastoma that had not responded to treatment or had come back after treatment. They say that temozolomide should be looked at further and in combination with another drug.
We have based this summary on information from the team who ran the trial. The information they sent us has been reviewed by independent specialists (
How to join a clinical trial
Please note: In order to join a trial you will need to discuss it with your doctor, unless otherwise specified.
Dr Julia Chisholm
Professor Andy Pearson
Children's Cancer and Leukaemia Group (CCLG)
NIHR Clinical Research Network: Cancer