Effects of adjuvant chemotherapy on specific and non-specific immune mechanisms.

Adjuvant chemotherapy is a well accepted concept in the treatment of breast cancer and has resulted in most clinical studies in a significant prolongation of the disease-free interval in certain subgroups of patients. However, very little is known about the late effects of adjuvant chemotherapy and its influence upon the function of a series of physiologic mechanisms. In the present paper, a review of our studies on the influence of adjuvant chemotherapy consisting of cyclophosphamide, methotrexate and fluoruracil (CMF) upon the function of B, T and natural killer (NK) cells is given. It is shown that CMF adversely influenced primary antibody production following vaccination for a prolonged period of time after the termination of CMF treatment. In investigating T cell function, it was found that the administration of CMF led also to a similarly prolonged impairment of phytohemagglutinin (PHA-)stimulated soluble interleukin 2 receptor (sIL-2R) production and to a decrease in the proliferation of peripheral blood mononuclear cells following mitogenic stimulation with PHA. Finally, NK cell activity was found to be decreased for such a prolonged period of time after the termination of CMF treatment, too. We thus conclude that the administration of CMF in the adjuvant setting leads to a pronounced and prolonged impairment of certain immune mechanisms.
AuthorsC C Zielinski, C Müller, E Kubista, A Staffen, M M Eibl
JournalActa medica Austriaca (Acta Med Austriaca) Vol. 17 Issue 1 Pg. 11-4 ( 1990) ISSN: 0303-8173 [Print] AUSTRIA
PMID2353562 (Publication Type: Journal Article)
Chemical References
  • Receptors, Interleukin-2
  • Cyclophosphamide
  • Fluorouracil
  • Methotrexate
  • Antibody Formation (drug effects)
  • Antineoplastic Combined Chemotherapy Protocols (adverse effects, therapeutic use)
  • B-Lymphocytes (drug effects)
  • Breast Neoplasms (drug therapy, immunology, surgery)
  • Combined Modality Therapy
  • Cyclophosphamide (administration & dosage, adverse effects)
  • Female
  • Fluorouracil (administration & dosage, adverse effects)
  • Follow-Up Studies
  • Humans
  • Immune Tolerance (drug effects)
  • Killer Cells, Natural (drug effects)
  • Lymphocyte Activation (drug effects)
  • Methotrexate (administration & dosage, adverse effects)
  • Receptors, Interleukin-2 (drug effects)
  • T-Lymphocytes (drug effects)

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