RandomiSed clinical trial assessing Use of an anti-inflammatoRy aGent in attenUating peri-operatiVe inflAmmatioN in non-meTastatic colon cancer – the S.U.R.G.U.V.A.N.T. trial

Authors: H. Paul Redmond, Peter M. Neary, Marcel Jinih, Emer O’Connell, Niamh Foley, Rolf W. Pfirrmann, Jiang H. Wang, D. Peter O’Lear


Background: Peri-operative inflammation has been extensively highlighted in cancer patients as detrimental. Treatment strategies to improve survival for cancer patients through targeting peri-operative inflammation have yet to be devised.

Methods: We conducted a multi-centre, randomised controlled clinical trial using Taurolidine in non-metastatic colon cancer patients. Patients were randomly assigned to receive Taurolidine or a placebo. The primary endpoint for the study was the mean difference in day 1 IL-6 levels. Secondary clinical endpoints included rates of post-operative infections and tumor recurrence.

Results: A total of 293 patients were screened for trial inclusion. Sixty patients were randomised. Twenty-eight patients were randomised to placebo and 32 patients to Taurolidine. IL-6 levels were equivalent on day 1 post-operatively in both groups. However, IL-6 levels were significantly attenuated over the 7 day study period in the Taurolidine group compared to placebo (p = 0.04). In addition, IL-6 levels were significantly lower at day 7 in the Taurolidine group (p = 0.04). There were 2 recurrences in the placebo group at 2 years and 1 in the Taurolidine group. The median time to recurrence was 19 months in the Placebo group and 38 months in the Taurolidine group (p = 0.27). Surgical site infection was reduced in the Taurolidine treated group (p = 0.09).

Conclusion: Peri-operative use of Taurolidine significantly attenuated circulating IL-6 levels in the initial 7 day post-operative period in a safe manner. Future studies are required to establish the impact of IL-6 attenuation on survival outcomes in colon cancer.

Source: BMC Cancer, 2018; 18 (1)