[Skip to Navigation]
February 1988

Effects of Cisplatin Plus Fluorouracil vs Cisplatin Plus Cytarabine on Head and Neck Squamous Multicellular Tumor Spheroids

Author Affiliations

From the Departments of Neoplastic Diseases (Drs Kohno, Ohnuma, and Holland) and Otolaryngology (Drs Kohno and Biller) and Derald H. Ruttenberg Cancer Center (Drs Kohno, Ohnuma, Biller, and Holland), Mount Sinai School of Medicine, New York.

Arch Otolaryngol Head Neck Surg. 1988;114(2):157-161. doi:10.1001/archotol.1988.01860140055021

• We compared the efficacy of cisplatin plus fluorouracil vs cisplatin plus cytarabine against HEp-2 head and neck carcinoma cells in monolayer and multicellular tumor spheroid (MTS) systems. Increases in exposure time to cisplatin and fluorouracil from one to 24 hours resulted in approximately tenfold and 1000-fold increases, respectively, in cell lethality for both monolayer and MTS cells. Dose-response curves for cisplatin or fluorouracil on MTS cells closely followed those from monolayer cells, indicating good drug penetration into the MTS core. In contrast, dose-response curves on MTS cells after 24-hour exposure to cisplatin and cytarabine showed progressively lesser efficacy at higher drug concentrations. For monolayer cells, cisplatin plus fluorouracil and cisplatin plus cytarabine were both synergistic, the latter combination more synergistic than the former. For MTS cells, both combinations again showed synergistic interaction at moderate to high effect levels. Heightened synergistic interaction was demonstrated especially with the cisplatin plus cytarabine combination. Thus, the cisplatin plus cytarabine combination was always more synergistic than cisplatin plus fluorouracil. These data may serve as a basis for additional clinical trials of cisplatin plus cytarabine in the treatment of patients with head and neck carcinoma.

(Arch Otolaryngol Head Neck Surg 1988;114:157-161)