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Anthracyclines, alone or in combination with other drugs, are among the most effective chemotherapeutic agents to treat breast cancer both in the adjuvant and neoadjuvant setting. Unfortunately, anthracycline-associated dose-dependent cardiotoxicity is a limiting factor in clinical use. Extensive efforts have been devoted to identifying strategies to prevent anthracycline-induced cardiotoxicity. However, most cardioprotective agents have shown little effect in clinical trials. Herbal medicines are pure, natural substances that have been used for centuries in many countries, including China. This trial aims to evaluate the cardioprotective effects and safety of Platycodon grandiflorum granules compared to placebo granules in patients with early breast cancer receiving anthracycline-based chemotherapy.
This study is a single-center, double-blinded, randomized, placebo-controlled, parallel-group trial. A total of 120 patients will be randomly allocated in a 1:1 ratio to receive either P. grandiflorum granules or placebo granules twice daily for 12 weeks. The primary outcome is heart failure (either clinical or subclinical). The secondary outcomes include all-cause mortality, cardiac death, electrocardiogram (ECG) findings, left ventricular diastolic function, longitudinal systolic strain and velocities measured by tissue Doppler imaging, cardiac biomarkers, such as troponin I (TnI), brain natriuretic peptide (BNP), and creatine kinase isoenzymes (CK-MB). Assessments will be performed at baseline (before randomization) and 3, 6, 9, 12, 16, and 20 weeks after randomization.
This will be the first clinical trial to evaluate the cardioprotective effects and safety of P. grandiflorum in patients with early breast cancer receiving anthracycline-based chemotherapy. We are also performing this trial to assess the feasibility of a larger-scale clinical trial in the future.
Chinese Clinical Trial Registry, ChiCTR-IPR-16009256. Registered on 23 September 2016.