Investigational New Drugs

, Volume 25, Issue 1, pp 69–75 | Cite as

Phase II trial of interferon and thalidomide in metastatic renal cell carcinoma

  • Ulka N. VaishampayanEmail author
  • Lance K. Heilbrun
  • Anthony F. Shields
  • Jawana Lawhorn-Crews
  • Karen Baranowski
  • Daryn Smith
  • Lawrence E. Flaherty
Phase II Studies


Objectives: To evaluate the toxicity and efficacy of interferon and thalidomide combination in a phase II clinical trial.

Patients and methods: Eligibility included metastatic renal cancer with a maximum of two prior regimens, performance status of 0‐2 and adequate renal, hepatic and bone marrow function.

Results: Twenty patients were enrolled on this phase II trial. Median age was 60.5 years (Range: 39–75 years). 17 patients had visceral metastases (lung/liver/both) and 3 patients had lymph node only metastases. A total of 26 cycles of 4 weeks each were administered; median of 1 cycle and range from 0‐9 cycles. The therapy was poorly tolerated with grade 3 adverse events noted in 12 (60%) of the 20 patients. No objective responses were noted. Of the 14 response evaluable patients, one had an unconfirmed response (38% decrease in size) and one had prolonged disease stabilization for 10 months. The median time to progression was 1.0 month and median survival was 2.8 months. Pre and post therapy PET scans were performed nine weeks apart on one patient. The mean standardized uptake values (SUV) declined from 1.45 (SUV min-max 0.89–1.76) to 1.12 (SUV min-max 0.55–1.47), denoting anti vascular effect. The patient did not have an objective response but had a disease stabilization sustained for 10 months.

Conclusion: The combination of interferon and thalidomide has minimal efficacy and considerable toxicity which makes this combination unworthy of future investigation in metastatic renal cancer.


Renal cancer Immunotherapy Phase II clinical trial Interferon Thalidomide 



Supported in part by a grant from the Dept. of Internal Medicine, Wayne State University, Detroit MI, by Schering Inc., Celgene Corp, and by NIH Cancer Center Support Grant CA-22453


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Copyright information

© Springer Science + Business Media, LLC 2006

Authors and Affiliations

  • Ulka N. Vaishampayan
    • 1
    • 3
    Email author
  • Lance K. Heilbrun
    • 2
  • Anthony F. Shields
    • 1
  • Jawana Lawhorn-Crews
    • 1
  • Karen Baranowski
    • 1
  • Daryn Smith
    • 2
  • Lawrence E. Flaherty
    • 1
  1. 1.Division of Oncology, Department of Medicine, Barbara Ann Karmanos Cancer InstituteWayne State UniversityDetroitUSA
  2. 2.Biostatistics UnitBarbara Ann Karmanos Cancer InstituteDetroitUSA
  3. 3.4 Hudson Webber Cancer Research CenterDetroitUSA

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