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Keywords:

  • allopurinol;
  • rasburicase;
  • tumour lysis syndrome

Summary

What is known and Objective

Single-dose rasburicase for the treatment and prevention of hyperuricaemia in adult and paediatric patients with cancer at high risk of tumour lysis syndrome (TLS) has been widely adopted in pharmacy practice as unlabelled use with limited clinical evidence. This meta-analysis study evaluated the efficacy and cost savings of a single-dose rasburicase (SDR) regimen compared with the Food and Drug Administration-approved daily dosing of rasburicase (DDR) for 5 days or the traditional treatment with allopurinol in adult cancer patients with hyperuricaemia or at high risk for TLS.

Methods

Prospective and retrospective studies were retrieved from a systemic search of major electronic data sources. Studies included in the meta-analysis were those with SDR for the prophylaxis of high-risk TLS or treatment of hyperuricaemia in adult patients with cancer. The results of response rate and controlling of time-dependent plasma uric acid (UA) reduction were pooled and compared with the results from patients treated with DDR for 5 days or patients treated with allopurinol. A cost analysis was performed to analyse the treatment costs for adults with hyperuricaemia or at high risk for TLS.

Results and Discussion

Ten studies (eight retrospective and two prospective) evaluated the SDR response rate and plasma UA level reduction over time. The pooled total number of patients treated with SDR (from 0·05 mg/kg to 0·20 mg/kg) was 269. The pooled response rate of the SDR arm was not significantly different than that of DDR (0·2 mg/kg) arm (88·15% vs. 90·18%, P = 0·542), but significantly stronger than that of allopurinol (300 mg/day orally days 1 to 5) arm (response rate: 88·15% vs. 66%, P < 0·0005). Pooled SDR group efficiently controlled the plasma uric acid (UA) level below 4·5 mg/dL over 24 h, 48 h and 72 h, whereas DDR reduced plasma UA levels to hypouricaemia level (<2 mg/dl). In addition, cost analysis demonstrated that standard-dose SDR (≥6 mg) has non-inferior clinical benefit and significant cost savings compared with the DDR regimen.

What is new and Conclusion

Single-dose rasburicase (SDR) for adult cancer patients with hyperuricaemia or at high risk for TLS demonstrated better response rate and stronger control of uric acid level compared with allopurinol. SDR response rate was not inferior to that of DDR, and the standard-dose SDR generates more cost savings compared with the DDR. It suggests that the single-dose rasburicase is clinically effective and cost efficient for the prophylaxis of high-risk TLS and the treatment of hyperuricaemia in adult patients with cancer. Additional randomized control studies are needed to confirm the findings of this meta-analysis study.