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Clinical Trials (PDQ®)

Memantine in Preventing Side Effects in Patients Undergoing Whole-Brain Radiation Therapy for Brain Metastases From Solid Tumors

Basic Trial Information
Trial Description
     Further Trial Information
     Eligibility Criteria
Trial Contact Information

Basic Trial Information

PhaseTypeStatusAgeSponsorProtocol IDs
Phase IIISupportive care, Tissue collection/Repository, TreatmentClosed18 and overNCI, OtherRTOG-0614
CDR0000577872, NCI-2009-00735, NCT00566852

Trial Description


RATIONALE: Memantine may be able to decrease side effects caused by whole-brain radiation therapy. It is not yet known if memantine is effective in preventing side effects caused by whole-brain radiation therapy.

PURPOSE: This randomized phase III trial is studying memantine to see how well it works compared to a placebo in preventing side effects caused by whole-brain radiation therapy in patients with brain metastases from solid tumors.

Further Study Information



  • Determine whether the addition of memantine hydrochloride to whole-brain radiotherapy (WBRT) preserves cognitive function, specifically memory, as measured by the Hopkins Verbal Learning Test for delayed recall (HVLT-delayed recall), over that of placebo and WBRT in patients with brain metastases at 24 weeks from the start of drug treatment.


  • Determine whether the addition of memantine hydrochloride preserves cognitive function, specifically memory, as measured by the HVLT-delayed recall at 8 weeks, 16 weeks, and 12 months from the start of drug treatment.
  • Determine whether the addition of memantine hydrochloride increases time to neurocognitive failure as measured by cognitive decline on a battery of tests including the HVLT for free recall, delayed recall, and delayed recognition; the Controlled Word Association Test (COWAT); the Trail Making Test Parts A and B (TMT); the Medical Outcomes Scale-Cognitive Functioning Subscale (MOS); and the Mini-Mental Status Examination (MMSE).
  • Evaluate the potential benefit of memantine hydrochloride in change and overall quality of life, as measured by the Functional Assessment of Cancer Therapy-Brain (FACT-Br) subscale.
  • Determine whether the addition of memantine hydrochloride increases progression-free survival.
  • Determine whether the addition of memantine hydrochloride increases overall survival.
  • Compare adverse events between the treatment arms according to the CTCAE v3.0 criteria.
  • Collect serum, plasma, buffy coat cells, urine, and CSF for future translational research analyses.

OUTLINE: This is a multicenter study. Patients are stratified according to recursive partitioning analysis (RPA) prognostic class (class I vs class II with controlled systemic disease) and prior surgical therapy (none vs radiosurgery or surgical resection). Patients are randomized to 1 of 2 treatment arms.

  • Arm I: Patients undergo whole-brain radiotherapy (WBRT) 5 days a week for 3 weeks (15 fractions). Patients also receive oral memantine hydrochloride once daily beginning on day 1 of WBRT and continuing for 24 weeks.
  • Arm II: Patients undergo WBRT as in arm I. Patients also receive oral placebo once daily beginning on day 1 of WBRT and continuing for 24 weeks.

After completion of study treatment, patients are followed at 6 months, every 4 months for 1 year, every 6 months for 2 years, and then annually thereafter.

Eligibility Criteria


  • Histologically or cytologically confirmed diagnosis of a solid tumor malignancy within the past 5 years
  • If the original histologic proof of malignancy is > 5 years, then pathological (i.e., more recent) confirmation is required (e.g., from a systemic metastasis or brain metastasis)
  • Brain metastases must be visible on contrast-enhanced MRI or a contrast enhanced CT scan (for patients unable to undergo MRI within the past 28 days)
  • Patients unable to undergo MRI imaging because of non-compatible devices are eligible, provided the contrast-enhanced CT scans are obtained and are of sufficient quality
  • Patients who had undergone radiosurgery or surgical resection and are planning adjuvant whole-brain radiotherapy do not have to have visible disease but do need a baseline MRI
  • Must have stable systemic disease (i.e. no evidence of systemic disease progression within the past 3 months)
  • Patients with brain metastases at initial presentation are eligible and do not need to demonstrate 3 months of stable scans



  • Karnofsky performance status 70-100%
  • Serum creatinine ≤ 3 mg/dL and creatinine clearance ≥ 30 mL/min
  • Total bilirubin ≤ 2.5 mg/dL
  • BUN < 20 mg/dL
  • Mini-mental status exam score ≥ 18
  • Negative serum pregnancy test
  • Fertile patients must practice adequate contraception


  • Severe, active co-morbidity, defined as follows:
  • Unstable angina and/or congestive heart failure requiring hospitalization within the last 6 months
  • Transmural myocardial infarction within the last 6 months
  • Acute bacterial or fungal infection requiring intravenous antibiotics at the time of registration
  • Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease exacerbation or other respiratory illness requiring hospitalization or precluding study therapy at the time of registration
  • Hepatic insufficiency resulting in clinical jaundice and/or coagulation defects
  • Pregnant or lactating women
  • Prior allergic reaction to memantine hydrochloride
  • Current alcohol or drug abuse
  • Intractable seizures while on adequate anticonvulsant therapy (i.e., more than one seizure per month for the past 2 months)



  • At least 14 days but no more than 56 days since prior therapy for brain metastasis, including radiosurgery and surgical resection
  • No systemic chemotherapy for 14 days prior, during, or for 14 days after completion of whole-brain radiotherapy (WBRT)


  • Prior cranial radiotherapy
  • Patients may have received up to 3 prior WBRT treatments and still be registered and randomized on the protocol provided WBRT parameters meet protocol requirements
  • Chronic short-acting benzodiazepine use

Trial Contact Information

Trial Lead Organizations/Sponsors

Radiation Therapy Oncology Group

National Cancer Institute

NRG Oncology

Paul D. BrownPrincipal Investigator

Christina A. MeyersStudy Chair

Sherry FoxStudy Chair

Deepak KhuntiaStudy Chair

Link to the current record.
NLM Identifer NCT00566852 processed this data on April 09, 2015

Note: Information about this trial is from the database. The versions designated for health professionals and patients contain the same text. Minor changes may be made to the record to standardize the names of study sponsors, sites, and contacts. only lists sites that are recruiting patients for active trials, whereas lists all sites for all trials. Questions and comments regarding the presented information should be directed to

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