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a cytotoxic alkylating agent, used in antineoplastic therapy primarily for treatment of malignant melanoma and in combination chemotherapy for Hodgkin's disease and sarcomas. Unlike other alkylating agents, its primary target is not DNA; its major effect is inhibition of RNA and protein synthesis. Called also DTIC.



FDA Box Warning

Give under supervision of physician experienced in cancer chemotherapy.

Hematopoietic depression is most common toxicity; hepatic necrosis has also occurred.

Drug is carcinogenic and teratogenic in animals.

Prescriber must weigh potential benefit against toxicity risk.


Unclear. Thought to inhibit DNA synthesis by acting as purine analog. Also causes alkylation and may interact with sulfhydryl groups.


Injection: 100-mg and 200-mg vials

Indications and dosages

Hodgkin's disease

Adults: 150 mg/m2 I.V. daily for 5 days in combination with other drugs, repeated q 4 weeks. Or 375 mg/m2 I.V. on first day of combination therapy, repeated q 15 days.

Metastatic malignant melanoma

Adults: 2 to 4.5 mg/kg I.V. daily for 10 days, repeated q 4 weeks. Or 250 mg/m2 I.V. daily for 5 days, repeated q 3 weeks.

Off-label uses

• Malignant pheochromocytoma


• Hypersensitivity to drug


Use cautiously in:

• hepatic dysfunction, impaired bone marrow function

• pregnant or breastfeeding patients

• children.


• Follow facility procedures for safe handling, administration, and disposal of chemotherapeutic drugs.

• Reconstitute with sterile water for injection according to manufacturer's directions.

• Further dilute reconstituted drug with 5% dextrose in water or normal saline solution.

Administer over 30 to 60 minutes by I.V. infusion only.

Take steps to prevent extravasation, which may cause tissue damage and severe pain.

Adverse reactions

CNS: malaise, paresthesia

GI: nausea, vomiting, dyspepsia, anorexia

Hematologic: anemia, leukopenia, thrombocytopenia, bone marrow depression

Musculoskeletal: myalgia

Skin: dermatitis, erythematous or urticarial rash, alopecia, flushing, photosensitivity

Others: flulike symptoms, fever, hypersensitivity reactions including anaphylaxis


Drug-diagnostic tests. Platelets, red blood cells, white blood cells: decreased counts

Drug-behaviors. Sun exposure: photosensitivity reaction

Patient monitoring

Frequently monitor CBC with white cell differential and platelet count. Know that hematopoietic depression is the most common toxicity and can be fatal.

• Assess infusion site closely for extravasation.

Patient teaching

Instruct patient to immediately report pain, burning, or swelling at infusion site; numbness in arms or legs; gait changes; respiratory distress; difficulty breathing; rash; or easy bruising or bleeding.

• Advise patient to minimize GI distress by eating small, frequent servings of healthy food and drinking plenty of fluids.

• Tell patient he'll undergo regular blood testing during therapy.

• As appropriate, review all other significant and life-threatening adverse reactions and interactions, especially those related to the tests and behaviors mentioned above.


5-(3,3 dimethyl-l-triazeno)-imidazole-4-carboxamide; abbreviation for dacarbazine.


See Dacarbazine.


Dacarbazine, see there.


References in periodicals archive ?
Those who wish to receive more information about the DTIC or have any questions should call the Product and Services Branch at (703)767-8267, (DSN) 427-8267, or toll-free 1-800-225-DTIC, menu selection 6, option 1; or send an e-mail to bcorders@dtic.
Indicates new publication or revised edition pending inclusion in the DTIC database.
Because DTIC collects and does not produce the information in our collection, the military technical reports are not available through the Government Printing Office's Federal Depository Library Program (GPO-FDLP).
In the early 1970s, DTIC was on the leading edge of computer technology in offering our registered users online access to bibliographic services.
DTIC Online is the gateway to unclassified, unlimited S&T information--approximately 50 percent of DTIC's collection.
About half of DOD contract documents get publicly available both through DTIC and NTIS.
Access to the R & E Portal is controlled by the DTIC registration process and is limited to federal employees and federal contractors.
Acker Library, interviewed Ryan about the work going on at DTIC to provide DoD with access to the most complete repository of defense-related research and information, and on how DTIC is reaching out to its customers all over the world.