Suramin-induced neutropenia

N. A. Dawson*, R. M. Lush, S. M. Steinberg, A. C. Tompkins, D. J. Headlee, W. D. Figg

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

9 Scopus citations


This paper presents a retrospective review of 6 cases of severe neutropenia attributed to suramin, the response to granulocyte-colony stimulating factor (G-CSF) and the possible mechanism. Plasma suramin concentrations, G-CSF, platelet-derived growth factor-AB (PDGF-AB) and fibroblast growth factor basic (FGF basic) levels were measured and correlated with neutropenic course. The time course of neutropenia was unpredictable and occurred both during and following discontinuation of suramin. Neutropenia rapidly resolved with G-CSF. Neither the measured growth factor levels nor plasma suramin concentrations correlated with neutropenia. We conclude that neutropenia secondary to suramin is unpredictable and responds to G-CSF administration permitting further suramin therapy. The mechanism remains unknown.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1534-1539
Number of pages6
JournalEuropean Journal of Cancer
Issue number9
StatePublished - Aug 1996
Externally publishedYes


  • Granulocyte colony-stimulating factor
  • Neutropenia
  • Prostatic neoplasms
  • Suramin
  • Toxicity


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