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May 25, 2005

Inhaled IL-2 Improves Five-Year Survival for Advanced Renal Cancer

Topics: Renal Cancer

Researchers at the University of Hamburg Medical School in Germany report that an inhaled form of interleukin-2 was associated with a five-year survival rate of 21% in patients with renal cell carcinoma that had metastasized to the lungs. In comparison, no patients who were treated with the systemic form of IL-2 in a study used for comparison purposes survived for five years. The results suggest that inhaled IL-2, delivered to the patient through a nebulizer, may be comparable in efficacy to high-dose IV bolus IL-2 therapy, but with less toxicity.

Israeli researchers recently reported that inhaled IL-2 gave patients with advanced metastatic renal cell carcinoma an average of 8.7 months of progression-free survival, although maximum overall survival in that study was three years. However, Allan J. Pantuck, M.D., a kidney cancer specialist at UCLA, who was not involved in the study, commented that the severity of disease of patients in the German trial appears to be lower than that of patients in the Israeli trial or in earlier trials of systemic IL-2, making valid comparisons difficult. Additionally, he offered that patients with renal cell carcinoma that has metastasized only to the lungs tend to have a better prognosis than those whose disease has spread to other sites.

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Posted by Richard at May 25, 2005 2:55 PM

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