Author(s): Doehn C, Kausch I, Melz S, Behm A, Jocham D
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Abstract In this paper, results from current randomized and other relevant studies on cytokine and vaccine therapy of kidney cancer in the adjuvant setting and in metastatic disease are reviewed. Improvement of medical therapy of kidney cancer is required since the relative 5-year survival of kidney cancer is only 62\%. In the adjuvant setting, cytokine monotherapy (interferon [IFN]-alpha or interleukin [IL]-2) is not effective in improving progression-free or overall survival. Recently, an autologous kidney cancer cell vaccine has been shown to reduce the risk of tumor progression following radical nephrectomy for organ-confined or locally advanced kidney cancer in a randomized Phase III study. There were only a few vaccine-related side effects. Presently, this is the only promising approach for the adjuvant treatment of kidney cancer following nephrectomy. In metastatic kidney cancer patients with the tumor-bearing kidney in situ, a combination of radical nephrectomy plus IFN-alpha is more effective than IFN-alpha alone. In metastatic kidney cancer without the option of operative removal of the primary tumor and/or metastases, cytokines such as IFN-alpha, IL-2 and IL-12 and their combinations result in response rates of 10-30\%, but the 5-year overall survival is less than 10\%. Furthermore, the ideal dose, administration and combination of different agents are yet to be defined. Vaccine therapy of metastatic kidney cancer has been investigated only in Phase I and II studies with limited clinical benefit. Based on the current literature there is a clear need for new approaches in metastatic kidney cancer.
This article was published in Expert Rev Anticancer Ther
and referenced in Journal of Vaccines & Vaccination