Co-immunotherapy with interleukin-2 and taurolidine for progressive metastatic melanoma

Ir J Med Sci. 2006 Jan-Mar;175(1):10-4. doi: 10.1007/BF03168992.


Background: Recombinant interleukin-2(rIL-2) therapy in metastatic melanoma is limited by toxicities, particularly vascular leak syndrome(VLS). Taurolidine potentiates the anti-neoplastic effects of IL-2 while reducing its associated endothelial cell dysfunction in experimental settings. We hypothesized that co-administration of rIL-2 with taurolidine could enhance tolerability without weakening effectiveness.

Methods: Eleven patients with progressive metastatic melanoma received high-dose rIL-2 with co-infusion of taurolidine. Patients were monitored for the development of toxicities and evidence of response.

Results: Ten patients tolerated twenty-nine courses of high-dose rIL-2 without dose-reduction. Most toxicities were low-grade. No patient developed VLS. Seven patients died from disease progression. Two had complete clinical and radiological responses to treatment. Two patients remain alive despite evidence of disease progression a mean of 17.5 months after diagnosing metastatic disease.

Conclusion: Co-administration of taurolidine with high-dose rIL-2 in stage IV melanoma patients appears to greatly enhance the tolerability of this regime without diminishing its therapeutic value.

Publication types

  • Clinical Trial, Phase III

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Drug Combinations
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Immunotherapy
  • Interleukin-2 / therapeutic use*
  • Ireland
  • Male
  • Melanoma / drug therapy*
  • Melanoma / secondary
  • Middle Aged
  • Skin Neoplasms / drug therapy*
  • Skin Neoplasms / secondary*
  • Taurine / analogs & derivatives*
  • Taurine / therapeutic use
  • Thiadiazines / therapeutic use*


  • Drug Combinations
  • Interleukin-2
  • Thiadiazines
  • Taurine
  • taurolidine