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Cancer Res. 1986 Nov;46(11):5687-90.

Cures and partial regression of murine and human tumors by recombinant human tumor necrosis factor.


We tested the effect of recombinant human tumor necrosis factor (TNF) on the growth of the murine methylcholanthrene induced fibrosarcoma and the human ovarian carcinoma (NIH:OVCAR-3) in mice. The mice received multiple doses (25-250 micrograms/kg) of TNF starting 7-10 days after s.c. transplantation of tumors when they were easily palpable. TNF was administered i.v. every other day for a total of 6 injections per mouse, or i.p. daily for 7 days. Complete tumor regression was observed in the methylcholanthrene induced tumor bearing mice in 90% of the mice treated with TNF (100 micrograms/kg), 67% treated with TNF (50 micrograms/kg), and 34% treated with TNF (25 micrograms/kg). Tumors which did not completely regress were growth retarded during the course of TNF treatment. All mice given the highest TNF dose are still alive and tumor free (currently over 400 days), whereas the median survival of control mice was 28-39 days. Partial regression was observed in 100% of mice bearing the ovarian carcinoma treated i.p. with 250 micrograms/kg. Injections of TNF i.v. resulted in higher percentage of cures than i.p. injections at similar dose levels. These results suggest that tumor necrosis factor represents a likely potent drug against solid tumors and that the method of administration is critical in optimizing its use in cancer.

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