Intraperitoneal recombinant alpha 2-interferon for 'salvage' immunotherapy in persistent epithelial ovarian cancer. Cancer treatment reviews Berek, J. S., Hacker, N. F., Lichtenstein, A., Jung, T., Spina, C., Knox, R. M., Brady, J., Greene, T., Ettinger, L. M., Lagasse, L. D. 1985; 12: 23-32


Fourteen patients with epithelial ovarian cancer were treated with intraperitoneal (i.p.) administration of alpha-recombinant interferon (rIFN-alpha 2) after documentation of persistent disease at second-look laparotomy and combination chemotherapy. After therapy, 11 patients had a surgical re-evaluation which confirmed 4 complete responses (36%), 1 partial response (9%), and disease progression in 6 (55%). Five of 7 patients (71%) with minimal residual disease (MRD, i.e. less than 5 mm) had a surgically-documented response, whereas there was none in the 4 patients whose tumors were greater than or equal to 5 mm. Fever greater than or equal to 38 degrees C was seen in 58%, greater than or equal to 39.0 degrees C in 18%; nausea and vomiting in 37%, and abdominal pain in 22%. There was no consistent alteration in peripheral WBC's during treatment, while i.p. monocytes and lymphocytes showed a significant boost on day 1 after each dose of rIFN-alpha 2. Natural killer (NK) lymphocyte cytotoxicity was elevated in the i.p. cavity fluid obtained from most patients on day 1 after treatment, while blood NK values showed considerable variability. Pharmacokinetic studies showed i.p. levels of rIFN-alpha 2 were 30-1000 times blood levels. I.p. rIFN-alpha 2 may act by increasing concentrations of drug and augmenting regional host cells in patients with MRD ovarian cancer.

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