Archivum Immunologiae et Therapiae Experimentalis, 1996, 44, 5

Cytokines in the Treatment of Hematological Disorders: Recent Progress and Perspectives


Abstract. Cytokines are involved in hematopoiesis by regulating proliferation, differentiation and cellular functions of various lineages of hematopoietic cells. There is an increasing range of clinical conditions in which cytokines are involved as therapeutic agents. One of the most advanced and successful applications is the stimulation of hematopoiesis by the colony stimulating factors (GM-CSF and G-CSF) and erythropoietin. Hematopoietic growth factors are effective in accelerating recovery from neutropenia after chemotherapy and bone marrow transplantation and in reducing incidence of infections. Interferon a (IFN-a ) proved a useful therapeutic agent for chronic myelogenous and hairy cell leukemias as well as for multiple myeloma and non-Hodgkin's lymphoma. Interleukin 2 is the only cytokine apart from IFN-a accepted as antineoplastic agent. It may be useful as adjuvant therapy in the hematological malignancies. It may be supposed that in the near future new recombinant cytokines will be introduced in the treatment of blood diseases.

Keywords: interferon a , interferon g ; hematopoietic growth factors; blood diseases; clinical applications of cytokines.