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Interleukin-2 is a standard treatment for patients with metastatic renal cell cancer. However, the optimal dose and schedule of interleukin-2 is not known. There is also little information about the long-term outcomes of patients with metastatic renal cell cancer treated with interleukin-2.

Kidney Cancer CancerConnect Renal

Physicians at the University of Washington treated 123 patients with metastatic renal cell cancer with high doses of interleukin-2 with or without infusion of lymphokine-activated killer cells. Nine patients (7%) achieved a complete response and 14 (11%) a partial response. Patients survived, on average, 19 months and survival beyond 5 years was 20%. Seven of the 9 patients with a complete response remain without evidence of cancer recurrence at 43-109 months. One patient died of treatment toxicity.

These physicians concluded that continuous infusion of interleukin-2 was less toxic than more rapid infusion of interleukin-2. This study also demonstrates the relatively low complete response rate has not changed over the past decade of research in the treatment of metastatic renal cell cancer.

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