An Open Label Single Arm Phase I/II study of MTX110 delivered by convection-enhanced delivery (CED) in patients with diffuse intrinsic pontine glioma (DIPG) previously treated with external beam radiation therapy

Trial Requirements and Treatment

This is an open-label, ascending dose, single arm phase I/II study of MTX110 delivered by CED in patients with DIPG following standard of care focal radiotherapy. We will start with a single dose drug concentration of 30 μM using a total volume of 3mL and administer MTX110 on day 1 only; we will then first dose escalate by the number of days MTX110 is given: 30 μM concentration, 3 ml total volume, administration will occur on day 1 and 2. We then will start to dose escalate the total volume that is being administered on days 1 and 2. The accelerated dose escalation design will allow intra-patient dose escalation. The concentration of gadoteridol (ProHance) will be 1 mM which is the same concentration that is being used for other studies; both agents will be combined and co-infused via the same catheters. A maximum of 2 catheters will be placed.

Rationale for Study

The overall median survival of children with DIPG is approximately 9 months, and remains unchanged despite decades of clinical trial research. The only standard of care is focal radiotherapy but essentially all children die of this disease. New therapeutic strategies are urgently needed. One of the potential reasons for failure of treatment is the blood-brain and blood-tumor barriers, which exclude potentially effective therapeutic agents. Direct delivery by convection-enhanced techniques can overcome this barrier and ensure adequate drug exposure to tumor cells. MTX110 is a soluble from of panobinostat. Panobinostat has been shown in pre-clinical models to be effective at slowing tumor growth in patient-derived brainstem xenografts, and these findings were seen both among carriers of histone mutations and wildtype histone models. The hypothesis of this study is that repeated direct delivery via convection-enhanced delivery (CED) of MTX110 will increase progression-free and overall survival in children with newly diagnosed DIPG following standard of care radiotherapy. This trial will assess the safety and preliminary efficacy of this strategy.

Primary Objectives

To determine the safety and tolerability of repeated administration of MTX110 co-infused with gadoteridol given by intratumoral CED in children with newly diagnosed DIPG.

Secondary Objectives 

To determine the clinical efficacy of repeated administration of MTX110 given by intratumoral CED in children with newly diagnosed DIPG in the confines of a phase I/II study.

Eligibility Criteria

Patients must have eligibility evaluations performed within 14 days prior to registration (unless otherwise stated) and must meet all inclusion and none of the exclusion criteria. In addition, the patient must be thoroughly informed about all aspects of the study, including the study visit schedule, required evaluations and all regulatory requirements. The written informed consent must be obtained from the patient or their legal guardian prior to enrollment. The following criteria apply to all patients enrolled onto the study unless otherwise specified. Tumor biopsy is not required prior to enrollment on study, unless imaging characteristics are not consistent with DIPG diagnosis and as detailed in 3.2.1.The Inclusion Criteria will be applied after patients have completed radiotherapy and within the given time frame per observation as listed below. Enrollment into the trial occurs after completion of radiation therapy and if all eligibility criteria are met.

Inclusion Criteria

1. Patients with newly diagnosed DIPG by MRI; defined as patients with a pontine location and diffuse involvement of at least 2/3 of the pons are eligible without histologic diagnosis. For lesions with typical imaging features, biopsy is neither encouraged nor required for eligibility. Tumors that are biopsied will be eligible if proven to be supportive of the diagnosis of a DIPG.Consensus of diagnosis by the study team must be met.

2. Patients who have completed focal radiotherapy within 14 weeks from time of enrollment are eligible.

3. Treatment must begin at a minimum of 4 weeks after, but no later than 14 weeks after, the date of completion of radiotherapy.

4. Prior Chemotherapy: Patients should be at least 30 days from last chemotherapy dose prior to start of CED infusion, with exception of antibody half-lives. For antibody therapies, at least 3 half-lives of the antibody after last dose of monoclonal antibody should have passed prior to CED infusion.

Prior Radiation: Patients must have received prior treatment with focal radiotherapy as part of initial treatment for DIPG and had their last dose at least 4 weeks prior to and no later than 14 weeks from the first CED treatment. Standard focal radiation therapy will include 54 to 60 Gy by external beam radiotherapy to the brainstem.

6. Age ≥ 3 and > 21 years of age.

7. Karnofsky ≥ 50 for patients >16 years of age and Lansky ≥ 50 for patients ≤ 16 years of age. Patients who are unable to walk because of paralysis, but who are able to mobilize using a wheelchair, will be considered ambulatory for the purpose of assessing the performance score.

8. Life expectancy of greater than 12 weeks measured from the date of completion of radiotherapy.

9. Corticosteroids: Patients who are receiving dexamethasone must be on a stable or decreasing dose for at least 1 week prior to registration.

10. Organ Function Requirements

 Adequate Bone Marrow Function defined as:

    • Peripheral absolute neutrophil count (ANC) ≥ 1000/mm3 and
    • Hemoglobin ≥ 8g/dl and

    • Platelet count ≥ 100,000/mm3 (transfusion independent, defined as not receiving platelet transfusions for at least 7 days prior to enrollment) and

    • Normal coagulation defined as normal INR or per institutional guidelines.

  • Adequate Renal Function defined as:

    • Creatinine clearance or radioisotope GFR ³ 70mL/min/1.73 m2or

    • A serum creatinine based on age/gender as follows:

        • Age 3 to <6 years: 0.8 (male); 0.8 (female)

        • Age 6 to < 10 years: 1 (male); 1 (female)

        • Age 10 to <13 years: 1.2 (male); 1.2 (female)

        • Age 13 to <16 years: 1.5 (male); 1.4 (female)

        • Age ≥ 16 years: 1.7 (male); 1.4 (female)

The threshold creatinine values in this table were derived from the Schwartz formula for estimating GFR utilizing child length and stature data published by the CDC.

  • Adequate Liver Function defined as:
    • Bilirubin (sum of conjugated + unconjugated) ≤ 1.5 x upper limit of normal (ULN) for age and

    • SGPT (ALT) ≤ 110 U/L and

    • Serum albumin ≥2 g/dL.

11. Adequate Neurologic Function defined as:

    • Patients with seizure disorder may be enrolled if on non-enzyme inducing anticonvulsants and well controlled.

12. The effects of MTX110 on the developing human fetus are unknown.For this reason women of child-bearing potential and men must agree to use adequate contraception (hormonal or barrier method of birth control; abstinence) prior to study entry, for the duration of study participation and 4 months after completion of MTX110 injection administration. Should a woman become pregnant or suspect she is pregnant while she or her partner is participating in this study, she should inform her treating physician immediately.

13. Able to understand, and willing to sign, a written informed consent document.

Exclusion Criteria for Patients with Newly Diagnosed DIPG

1. Patients who had clinical and/or radiographic (MRI) progression of tumor following external beam radiation therapy.

2. Patients with metastatic disease, including leptomeningeal or subarachnoid disseminated disease.

3. Patients with tumor morphology that predicts poor coverage of the majority of the tumor including bilateral thalamic involvement, or cysts that represent >50% of cross-sectional areas of the pons. These subjects should be discussed with the study chairs.

4. Patients who are receiving any other investigational agents or other tumor-directed therapy.

5. History of allergic reactions attributed to compounds of similar chemical or biologic composition to MTX110 or gadolinium.

6. Uncontrolled intercurrent illness including, but not limited to, ongoing or active infection, symptomatic congestive heart failure, unstable angina pectoris, cardiac arrhythmia, or psychiatric illness/social situations that would limit compliance with study requirements.

7. Female patients of childbearing potential must not be pregnant or breast-feeding. Female patients of childbearing potential must have a negative serum or urine pregnancy test within 14 days of registration.

8. Patients who are unable to return for follow-up visits or obtain follow-up studies required to assess toxicity to therapy.

9. Patients with MRI or clinical evidence of uncontrolled tumor mass effect are excluded; the assessment of mass effect should be made by the study chairs and study neurosurgeons prior to any planned CED treatment.

10. Untreated symptomatic hydrocephalus determined by treating physician.

11. Patients with evidence of intra-tumoral hemorrhage > 5 mm maximal diameter. These subjects should be discussed with the study chair.

12. Subjects with prolonged QTc (> 450 msec) will be excluded from the study.

Important Note: The eligibility criteria listed above are interpreted literally and cannot be waived.


Funding is provided by Cannonball Kids’ Cancer and The Cure Starts Now.

How to Enroll

If you believe your child or patient is eligible for this trial, contact the closest participating site for more information or contact us at

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