(HealthDay News) — Pretreatment serum lactate dehydrogenase (LDH) is a predictive biomarker for the survival benefit derived from treatment with the TORC1 inhibitor temsirolimus in patients with renal cell carcinoma (RCC), according to a study published online Aug. 13 in the Journal of Clinical Oncology.

To assess whether serum LDH is prognostic and has predictive value, Andrew J. Armstrong, M.D., from Duke University in Durham, N.C., and colleagues evaluated serum LDH (pretreatment and post-treatment) in 404 poor-risk patients with RCC receiving temsirolimus or interferon alfa treatment during participation in an international phase III randomized trial.

The researchers found that mean baseline serum normalized LDH was 1.23 times the upper limit of normal (ULN). For patients with LDH more than 1 × ULN, the multivariable hazard ratio for death was 2.81 (P < 0.001) compared to patients with LDH ≤1 × ULN. Overall survival was significantly improved with temsirolimus (6.9 versus 4.2 months) among the 140 patients with LDH above the ULN. However, overall survival was not significantly improved with temsirolimus compared with interferon therapy among the 264 patients with normal LDH (11.7 and 10.4 months, respectively; P = 0.514).

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“Serum LDH is a prognostic and a predictive biomarker for the survival benefit conferred by TORC1 inhibition in poor-risk RCC,” the authors write.

Several authors disclosed financial ties to pharmaceutical companies, including Pfizer, which provided funding to the authors’ institution and manufactures temsirolimus.

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