Copyright © 2017 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd. Glioblastoma (GBM) causes poor survival in patients even when applying aggressive treatment. Temozolomide (TMZ) is the standard chemotherapeutic choice for GBM treatment, but resistance always ensues. In previous years, efforts have focused on new therapeutic regimens with conventional drugs to activate immune responses that may enhance tumor regression and prevent regrowth, for example the “metronomic” approaches. In metronomic scheduling studies, cyclophosphamide (CPA) in GL261 GBM growing subcutaneously in C57BL/6 mice was shown not only to activate antitumor CD8+ T-cell response, but also to induce long-term specific T-cell tumor memory. Accordingly, we have evaluated whether metronomic CPA or TMZ administration could increase survival in orthotopic GL261 in C57BL/6 mice, an immunocompetent model. Longitudinal in vivo studies with CPA (140 mg/kg) or TMZ (range 140–240 mg/kg) metronomic administration (every 6 days) were performed in tumor-bearing mice. Tumor evolution was monitored at 7 T with MRI (T2-weighted, diffusion-weighted imaging) and MRSI-based nosological images of response to therapy. Obtained results demonstrated that both treatments resulted in increased survival (38.6 ± 21.0 days, n = 30) compared with control (19.4 ± 2.4 days, n = 18). Best results were obtained with 140 mg/kg TMZ (treated, 44.9 ± 29.0 days, n = 12, versus control, 19.3 ± 2.3 days, n = 12), achieving a longer survival rate than previous group work using three cycles of TMZ therapy at 60 mg/kg (33.9 ± 11.7 days, n = 38). Additional interesting findings were, first, clear edema appearance during chemotherapeutic treatment, second, the ability to apply the semi-supervised source analysis previously developed in our group for non-invasive TMZ therapy response monitoring to detect CPA-induced response, and third, the necropsy findings in mice cured from GBM after high TMZ cumulative dosage (980–1400 mg/kg), which demonstrated lymphoma incidence. In summary, every 6 day administration schedule of TMZ or CPA improves survival in orthotopic GL261 GBM with respect to controls or non-metronomic therapy, in partial agreement with previous work on subcutaneous GL261.
- immune response
- metronomic therapy
- orthotopic tumors
- preclinical brain tumor model