Medical Research Council Study of Misonidazole in Conjunction with Radiotherapy for the Treatment of Malignant Gliomas (Astrocytomas) Grades III and IV

Can adding a new drug to radiotherapy help people with a brain tumour?

What was this study about?

The BR01 trial aimed to test whether it was useful for doctors to use a drug called misonidazole alongside radiotherapy when they were treating people with a type of brain tumour called a malignant glioma (astrocytoma) grades III and IV.

What difference did this study make?

The results of this trial suggested that misonidazole did not make radiotherapy more effective and so it did not help to treat people with this type of cancer.

Misonidazole was used with radiotherapy with several trials in patients with different types of cancer. Together they showed that this approach did not help patients having radiotherapy for their cancer live longer, and that different treatment approaches would be needed.

MRC Working Party on misonidazole in gliomas. A study of the effect of misonidazole in conjunction with radiotherapy for the treatment of grades 3 and 4 astrocytomas. A report from the MRC Working Party on misonidazole in gliomas. British Journal of Radiology. 1983; 56:673-682

Type of study

Randomised trial

Contact details

Who funded the study?

The Medical Research Council.

When did it take place?

Patients were treated between 1979 and 1981. The results of this trial were published in 1983.

Who was included?

436 people with a malignant glioma took part in the study.