Abstract Background: Early clinical trials have suggested that glutathione (GSH)offers protection from the toxic effects of cisplatin.
Patients and methods: One hundred fifty-one patients with ovariancancer (stage I–IV) were evaluated in a clinical trial of cisplatin(CDDP) ± glutathione (GSH). The objective was to determine whether GSHwould enhance the feasibility of giving six cycles of CDDP at 100mg/m2 without dose reduction due to toxicity.
Results: When considering the proportion of patients receiving six coursesof CDDP at any dose, GSH produced a significant advantage over control –58% versus 39%, (P = 0.04). For these patients there was asignificant difference between the reduction in creatinine clearance for GSHtreated patients compared with control – 74% versus 62%(P = 0.006). Quality of life scores demonstrated that for patients receivingGSH there was a statistically significant improvement in depression, emesis,peripheral neurotoxicity, hair loss, shortness of breath and difficultyconcentrating.
As an indication of overall activity, these patients werestatistically significantly more able to undertake housekeeping and shopping.Clinically assessed response to treatment demonstrated a trend towards abetter outcome in the GSH group (73% versus 62%) but this wasnot statistically significant (P = 0.25).
Conclusions: The results demonstrate that adding GSH to CDDP allows morecycles of CDDP treatment to be administered because less toxicity is observedand the patient's quality of life is improved.