Activity of human leukocyte interferon in a human tumor cloning system

Daniel D. Von Hoff, Jordan Gutterman, Barry Portnoy, Charles A. Coltman

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

15 Scopus citations


Clinical trials using interferon to treat human malignancies are currently hampered by limited supplies of the compound. We have utilized a human tumor cloning system as an assay for the antitumor effects of human leukocyte interferon. Interferon was tested against 62 patients' tumors growing in this soft agar system. A dose-dependent cytotoxic effect of interferon was noted against only five of the patients' tumors. A≥70% decrease in tumor colony-forming units (TCFUs) was noted with one lymphosarcoma cell leukemia, one small cell lung cancer, one adenocarcinoma of the lung, one breast cancer, and a pancreatic cancer. One patient had his tumor cultured in vitro and had a clinical trial with interferon. This patient whose tumor demonstrated in vitro sensitivity had a clinical antitumor effect with interferon therapy. The in vitro results in this study suggest that the human leukocyte interferon currently available has a low level of activity in a human tumor cloning system. Additional testing is needed to determine whether the cloning system can identify the patient(s) who might have an antitumor effect from the interferon.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)99-103
Number of pages5
JournalCancer chemotherapy and pharmacology
Issue number1
StatePublished - Apr 1982
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Oncology
  • Toxicology
  • Pharmacology
  • Cancer Research
  • Pharmacology (medical)


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