Combinations of inhibitors directed at the individual components of ribonucleotide reductase were studied for their effects on L1210 cell growth in culture. The combinations included pyrozoloimidazole (IMPY) plus deoxyadenosine and hydroxyurea plus deoxyadenosine. Modulators were utilized to potentiate the effects of hydroxyurea, IMPY, or deoxyadenosine. Desferal was used to modulate the activity of hydroxyurea and IMPY while erythoro-9-(2-hydroxy-3-nonyl)adenine (EHNA) was used as the modulator of deoxyadenosine metabolism. While the combinations of deoxyadenosine-EHNA, hydroxyurea-Desferal, or IMPY-Desferal caused increased growth inhibition of L1210 cells at high drug concentrations, combinations which consisted of deoxyadenosine-EHNA-IMPY-Desferal or deoxyadenosine-EHNA-hydroxyurea-Desferal gave strong synergistic inhibition of L1210 cell growth in culture at concentrations of each of the drugs which alone had minimal inhibitory effects on tumor cell growth. The four-drug combination was clearly more effective than any three-drug combination in terms of inhibition of tumor cell growth. It was also observed that the concentrations of the modulators (Desferal or EHNA) were as critical as the concentrations of hydroxyurea, IMPY, or deoxyadenosine in establishing an effective drug combination.
This research was supported by Grant CA 27398 from the USPHS and by the National Cancer Institute and the Phi Beta Psi Sorority.