Proper cytotoxic drug handling?

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DrakeICN's picture
Proper cytotoxic drug handling?

First off, I am obviously not asking you to do my job for me. I can google and and pubmed myself (and do not wish to take up your valuable time with things I should do myself.)

No, what I ask for is personal experience and useful tips.

I am working / will work with the following drugs;
Permetrexed, Carboplatin, Doxorubicin, Gemcitabine, Vinorelbine.

I test drug viability by regurarly kill off cell lines with known sensitivity to above drugs.
Now, the problem is, the information avaible on cytotoxic drugs (I have found so far) is not adapted to cell culture conditions but to patient conditions. For instance, they suggest gemcitabine is viable only for 7-35 days after you mix it with salt solution, and you can ABSOLUTELY not freeze it. That may be true for patients, but this three year old gemcitabine repeatedly frozen and thawed gemcitabine is certainly able to kill cell lines. However, I have noticed a loss of reactivity over time with some of the other drugs - especially because of tendencies to crystallize when left in room temperature AND when frozen and thawed. And, of course, even though I am able to kill cell lines, that does not necessarily mean 100% of the active ingridient is still active so to speak - and perhaps this gives false negatives with my valuable patient material. The problem here is of course that the drugs are costly. I can not just simple order more on a whim.

So what I need help with is;
1. What is the best way to store drugs over long periods of time (when diluted)? (My best guess is to store them in salt solution in the fridge.)
2. Is there a better / alternative way to check for drug viablity other than killing cell lines? (My best guess is NO.)

Grateful for any help.

Oh, and I will google and pubmed even more, I promise. In the meanwhile, though, any expert help is welcome ;)