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Angiogenic and Immune Parameters During Recombinant Interferon-α2b Adjuvant Treatment in Patients With Melanoma

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As an adjuvant therapy for patients with high risk of recurrent melanoma, high-dose interferon (IFN)-α2b therapy has been shown to have some efficacy. We examined 22 patients with resected melanoma who were treated with repeated injections of recombinant IFN-α2b during the treatment. Both angiogenic and immune parameters were measured. White blood cells (WBCs) and lymphocyte numbers, lymphocyte subpopulations, serum concentrations of IFN-α and anti-IFN-α antibodies, and the serum vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF), interleukin (IL)-8, and basis fibroblast growth factor (bFGF) concentrations were determined over time in resected, recurrence-free patients with American Joint Committee on Cancer (AJCC) stage III melanoma with one or less (LN+ ≤ 1, n = 7) or more than one (LN+ > 1, n = 8) lymph nodes involved, and AJCC stage IV resected disease (n = 7). Follow-up and recurrence-free intervals were longer in stage III (LN+ ≤ 1) patients compared with stage IV patients (P < 0.05). The number of WBCs and lymphocytes decreased during the treatment for all patient groups (P < 0.001). In addition, percentages of CD8 and CD20 were higher in stage IV patients than in stage III (LN+ > 1) and stage III (LN+ ≤ 1) patients at the beginning of therapy (P < 0.05). A significant increase in the percentage of CD20+ cells, mostly B lymphocytes, was observed in the stage III (LN+ > 1) and stage III (LN+ ≤ 1) patients over time but not in stage IV patients (P < 0.001). Low IL-8 and bFGF concentrations at the beginning of therapy were associated with significantly longer recurrence-free survival (P < 0.05). These results warrant a larger trial to determine if the differences observed in patients before treatment can provide prognostic markers in patients receiving IFN-α2b therapy.
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Keywords: Antibody; Basic fibroblast growth factor; CD20; HLA-DR; Interferon-α2b; Interleukin-8; Key words: Immunotherapy; Melanoma; Vascular endothelial growth factor

Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: Carolinas Medical Center, PO Box 32861, 1000 Blythe Blvd., Charlotte, NC 28203

Publication date: 2001-05-01

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