Which medications in the drug class Interferons are used in the treatment of Hairy Cell Leukemia?

Updated: Sep 16, 2018
  • Author: Emmanuel C Besa, MD; Chief Editor: Koyamangalath Krishnan, MD, FRCP, FACP  more...
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Answer

Interferons

Interferons are naturally produced proteins with antitumor and immunomodulatory effects.

Interferon alfa 2a (Roferon)

Protein product manufactured by recombinant DNA technology. First systemic drug shown to partially eradicate hairy cells from bone marrow, and first approved indication was for this disease. The mechanism of antitumor activity is not clearly understood; however, direct antiproliferative effects against malignant cells and modulation of the host immune response may play important roles.

Roferon and Intron A differ from the natural product only in amino acid residue at position 23 and achieve similar results in hairy cell leukemia. Response rates are 65% overall, with 10% of patients achieving a complete remission.

Interferon alfa-2b (Intron A)

Protein product manufactured by recombinant DNA technology. First systemic drug shown to partially eradicate hairy cells from bone marrow, and first approved indication was for this disease. The mechanism of antitumor activity is not clearly understood; however, direct antiproliferative effects against malignant cells and modulation of the host immune response may play important roles.

Roferon and Intron A differ from the natural product only in amino acid residue at position 23 and achieve similar results in hairy cell leukemia. Response rates are 65% overall, with 10% of patients achieving a complete remission.


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