Prognostic value of the immunomonitoring of patients with renal cell carcinoma under therapy with IL-2/IFN-alpha-2 in combination with 5-FU

Urol Res. 1996;24(5):297-303. doi: 10.1007/BF00304780.


After tumor nephrectomy, patients suffering from metastatic renal cell carcinoma (RCC) received interleukin-2 (IL-2), interferon (IFN)-alpha-2b and 5-fluorouracil (5-FU) in one to three treatment cycles over 8 weeks. Using flow cytometry, we investigated the immunophenotype of peripheral blood lymphocytes from 22 patients during therapy. In all patients, we found an increase in the absolute number of T lymphocytes, especially of the CD4 type, and in the number of HLA-DR+, CD25+ T cells and natural killer (NK) cells. The mean number of B cells did not increase during therapy. The numbers of CD4+, CD8+ and CD25+ T cells correlated significantly with the clinical response. In addition, we found that the pretherapeutic number of T lymphocytes and B cells but not of NK cells was significantly higher in patients with a therapy-induced clinical response. In conclusion, we describe the predictive value of the number of lymphocytes from peripheral blood for the efficiency of IL-2/IFN-alpha-2b therapy in combination with 5-FU in patients with metastatic renal cell carcinoma.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Antimetabolites, Antineoplastic / administration & dosage*
  • Carcinoma, Renal Cell / drug therapy
  • Carcinoma, Renal Cell / immunology
  • Carcinoma, Renal Cell / therapy*
  • Combined Modality Therapy
  • Drug Therapy, Combination
  • Female
  • Fluorouracil / administration & dosage*
  • Humans
  • Immunotherapy
  • Interferon alpha-2
  • Interferon-alpha / administration & dosage*
  • Interleukin-2 / administration & dosage*
  • Kidney Neoplasms / drug therapy
  • Kidney Neoplasms / immunology
  • Kidney Neoplasms / therapy*
  • Killer Cells, Natural / immunology
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Monitoring, Immunologic
  • Prognosis
  • Recombinant Proteins
  • T-Lymphocyte Subsets / immunology


  • Antimetabolites, Antineoplastic
  • Interferon alpha-2
  • Interferon-alpha
  • Interleukin-2
  • Recombinant Proteins
  • Fluorouracil