Electrocardiographic studies of romidepsin demonstrate its safety and identify a potential role for KATP channel

Anne M. Noonan, Robin A. Eisch, David J. Liewehr, Tristan M. Sissung, David J. Venzon, Thomas P. Flagg, Mark C. Haigney, Seth M. Steinberg, William D. Figg, Richard L. Piekarz, Susan E. Bates*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

39 Scopus citations


Purpose: Romidepsin is a histone deacetylase inhibitor (HDI) approved for the treatment of both cutaneous and peripheral T-cell lymphoma (CTCL and PTCL). During development, a thorough assessment of cardiac toxicity was conducted. Experimental Design: A phase II single-agent nonrandomized study of romidepsin was conducted in patients with CTCL or PTCL who had progressed after at least 1 prior systemic therapy. Results: Results for the first 42 patients enrolled on the NCI 1312 phase II study of romidepsin in CTCL or PTCL showed no cardiac toxicity based on serial electrocardiograms (ECG), troponins, and MUGA scans/echocardiograms. The cardiac assessments reported herein confirm the safety of romidepsin among 131 enrolled patients, while supporting a role for electrolyte replacement. Heart rate increased an average 11 bpm following romidepsin infusion; there was no evidence of increased arrhythmia. Criteria for potassium/magnesium replacement were met before 55% of 1365 romidepsin doses; an association with hypoalbuminemia was confirmed. We propose a mechanism for ST segment flattening and depression, the most common ECG abnormalities observed: HDI-induced alteration of the activity or expression of KATP channels. In addition, examination of the variants of the active transporter of romidepsin, ABCB1, showed a trend toward smaller heart rate changes in the peri-infusion period among wild-type than variant diplotypes. Conclusions: We conclude that in the context of appropriate attention to electrolyte levels, the data support the cardiac safety of romidepsin.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)3095-3104
Number of pages10
JournalClinical Cancer Research
Issue number11
StatePublished - 1 Jun 2013
Externally publishedYes


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