In vitro cytotoxic effect of Trastuzumab in combination with Pertuzumab in breast cancer cells is improved by interleukin-2 activated NK cells

  • Amir Asgari
  • Sedigheh Sharifzadeh
  • Abbas Ghaderi
  • Ahmad Hosseini
  • Amin RamezaniEmail author
Original Article


Targeting erb-b2 receptor tyrosine kinase 2 (ERBB2) using the combination of Trastuzumab and Pertuzumab has demonstrated promising results in breast cancer therapy. It has further been revealed that interleukin-2 (IL-2) can activate Natural Killer cells (NK cells) and elevate their cytotoxic potency against tumor cells. In this study, we explored the cytotoxic effect of recombinant human IL-2 in combination with Trastuzumab and Pertuzumab on the ERBB2 positive (SK-BR-3) and negative (MDA-MB-231) breast cancer cell lines. The cytotoxicity level of IL-2 activated NK cells (approximately 75%) were significantly higher than untreated cells (approximately 55%) in the presence of Trastuzumab and Pertuzumab against SK-BR-3 cells, while no difference was observed in the case of MDA-MB-231 cells (about 15%).


Breast cancer Immunotherapy Trastuzumab Pertuzumab Interleukin 2 



The study was a part of the M.Sc thesis project of Amir Asgari, Department of Medical Biotechnology, Shiraz University of Medical Sciences (Grant No. 15652). In addition, this work was supported by Shiraz Institute for Cancer Research (Grant No. ICR-100-509)

Compliance with ethical standards

Conflict of interest

The authors declare that there are no conflicts of interest regarding this manuscript.


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Copyright information

© Springer Nature B.V. 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Division of Medical Biotechnology, Department of Laboratory Sciences, School of Paramedical SciencesShiraz University of Medical SciencesShirazIran
  2. 2.Shiraz Institute for Cancer Research, School of MedicineShiraz University of Medical SciencesShirazIran
  3. 3.Department of Immunology, School of MedicineShiraz University of Medical SciencesShirazIran
  4. 4.Department of Medical Biotechnology, School of Advanced Medical Sciences and TechnologiesShiraz University of Medical SciencesShirazIran

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