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Rev Neurol (Paris). 1992;148(6-7):454-66.

The cellular immunotherapy of primary brain tumors.

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Department of Neurosurgery, New York University Medical Center, New York 10016.


The use of adjuvant immunotherapy for the treatment of primary malignant brain tumors dates to studies performed in the 1960's and 1970's using non-specific immune stimulators. Although the theoretical designs have remained similar, recent advances in molecular biotechnology have produced a new group of recombinant cytokines, spawning a new generation of immunotherapy-based clinical trials. In contrast to other published Phase I/II studies, we have had highly encouraging preliminary results using lymphokine-activated killer (LAK) cells and recombinant human Interleukin-2 (rIL-2; Cetus, Emeryville, CA), when the patients' use of corticosteroids could be restricted while on study. Patients with recurrent grade 3/3 glioma received multiple cycles of autologous LAK cells and rIL-2, post-operatively, via an Ommaya reservoir implanted into the tumor cavity following re-operation. The overall median survival for 13 patients with grade 3/3 glioma has not yet been reached at 55 weeks following second surgery, [mean +/- SEM, 64.7 +/- 10.5 weeks], with 5 patients still alive. Three patients have had partial responses (PR) demonstrated by CT scanning. In addition, one patient with grade 2/3 glioma has had a complete response (CR), with the disappearance of all residual CT-documented enhancement and mass effect.

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