, Volume 74, Issue 2, pp 257-265,
Open Access This content is freely available online to anyone, anywhere at any time.
Date: 01 Jun 2014

Phase 1 dose-escalation study of the PARP inhibitor CEP-9722 as monotherapy or in combination with temozolomide in patients with solid tumors



Poly(ADP-ribose) polymerase-1 (PARP-1) is a nuclear enzyme important in DNA repair. PARP-1 activation at points of DNA strand break results in poly(ADP-ribose) polymer formation, opening the DNA structure, and allowing access of other repair enzymes. CEP-9722 inhibits PARP-1 and PARP-2 and is designed to potentiate DNA-damaging chemotherapies.


This dose-escalating phase 1 study assessed the safety, maximum tolerated dose (MTD), and pharmacokinetics/pharmacodynamics of CEP-9722 plus temozolomide in adults with solid tumors. Tumor response was also assessed. Participants received a 14-day cycle of CEP-9722 (days 1 and 3–5 or days 1–5), followed by 28-day cycles of CEP-9722 plus temozolomide 150 mg/m2 on days 1–5. The initial CEP-9722 dose (cohort 1) was 150 mg/day; dose escalation followed a modified Fibonnaci sequence.


Twenty-six patients received CEP-9722 150–1,000 mg/day combined with temozolomide. Dose-limiting toxicities of asthenia and persistent weight loss at 1,000 mg/day resulted in 750 mg/day being defined as the MTD and recommended dose for further study. Overall, 24 (92 %) patients had treatment-related adverse events (TRAEs), mostly grade 1 or 2, with nausea, vomiting, and diarrhea having the strongest relation to CEP-9722. Four patients had grade 3 TRAEs (asthenia, myositis, diarrhea, and fatigue). Systemic exposure generally increased with dosage, with high inter- and intra-patient variability at all doses. Pharmacodynamic assessment confirmed PARP inhibition although no dose response was apparent. One patient with melanoma achieved a partial response (1,000 mg/day).


CEP-9722 was adequately tolerated with temozolomide; the MTD was 750 mg/day. Only limited clinical activity was observed.