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Systematic (IUPAC) name
CAS number 645-05-6
ATC code L01XX03
PubChem 2123
DrugBank APRD00652
Chemical data
Formula C9H18N6 
Mol. mass 210.28 g/mol
Pharmacokinetic data
Bioavailability  ?
Protein binding 94%
Metabolism  ?
Half life 4.7-10.2 hours
Excretion  ?
Therapeutic considerations
Pregnancy cat.


Legal status
Routes  ?

Altretamine (also hexalen) is a drug that is used to treat refractory ovarian cancer. It is not considered a first-line treatment,[1] but it can be useful as salvage therapy.[2] It also has the advantage of being less toxic than other drugs used for treating refractory ovarian cancer.[3]

The precise mechanism by which altretamine exerts its anti-cancer effect is unknown, but it is classified by MeSH as an alkylating antineoplastic agent. Hydroxymethylmelamines are the active metabolite.[4]

It was approved by the FDA in 1990.

Side effects

Side effects include nausea, vomiting, diarrhea and neurotoxicity.


  1. ^ Keldsen N, Havsteen H, Vergote I, Bertelsen K, Jakobsen A (2003). "Altretamine (hexamethylmelamine) in the treatment of platinum-resistant ovarian cancer: a phase II study". Gynecol. Oncol. 88 (2): 118-22. PMID 12586589.
  2. ^ Chan JK, Loizzi V, Manetta A, Berman ML (2004). "Oral altretamine used as salvage therapy in recurrent ovarian cancer". Gynecol. Oncol. 92 (1): 368-71. PMID 14751188.
  3. ^ Malik IA (2001). "Altretamine is an effective palliative therapy of patients with recurrent epithelial ovarian cancer". Jpn. J. Clin. Oncol. 31 (2): 69-73. PMID 11302345.
  4. ^ Damia G, D'Incalci M (1995). "Clinical pharmacokinetics of altretamine". Clinical pharmacokinetics 28 (6): 439-48. PMID 7656502.

This article is licensed under the GNU Free Documentation License. It uses material from the Wikipedia article "Altretamine". A list of authors is available in Wikipedia.
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