Severe intrahepatic cholestasis in patients treated with recombinant interleukin-2 and lymphokine-activated killer cells

Mitchel Hoffman, Abraham Mittelman, Brad Dworkin, William Rosenthal, Deborah Beneck, Elizabeth Gafney, Zalmen Arlin, Daniel Levitt, Eckhard Podack

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

19 Scopus citations

Abstract

Immunotherapy with recombinant interleukin-2 (rIL-2) and lymphokine-activated killer cells (LAK) has become a new form of therapy that has been shown to induce remissions in patients with renal cell carcinoma and melanoma. Despite encouraging results, this form of therapy has been associated with increasing toxicity, often requiring therapy in an intensive-care unit. In this report severe intrahepatic cholestasis occurred in two patients receiving rIL-2 and LAK cells. This form of cholestasis appeared to be directly related to rIL-2 administration at a doses of 2×106 U/m2 and 3x106 U/m2 t.i.d. A liver biopsy showed moderate hepatocellular bile stasis, with lobular and portal inflamation. All other studies for potential cause of this cholestasis were negative, including studies for metastatic disease. When therapy was discontinued, evidence for cholestasis and bile stasis resolved. We conclude that rIL-2 is a drug with a potential to induce severe hepatic injury that is reversible upon cessation of therapy with rIL-2. Further care should be exercised when rIL-2 is administered to patients with abnormal liver function.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)175-178
Number of pages4
JournalJournal of cancer research and clinical oncology
Volume115
Issue number2
DOIs
StatePublished - Apr 1 1989

Keywords

  • Cholestasis
  • Interleukin-2
  • LAK cells

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Oncology
  • Cancer Research

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    Hoffman, M., Mittelman, A., Dworkin, B., Rosenthal, W., Beneck, D., Gafney, E., Arlin, Z., Levitt, D., & Podack, E. (1989). Severe intrahepatic cholestasis in patients treated with recombinant interleukin-2 and lymphokine-activated killer cells. Journal of cancer research and clinical oncology, 115(2), 175-178. https://doi.org/10.1007/BF00397920