Immune enhancement by tumor-therapeutic drugs and endotoxins

D. Gaal, A. Nowotny

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

8 Citations (Scopus)


Five tumor chemotherapeutic drugs: adriamycin (ADM), formyl leurosine (FLE), 1,2-5,6-dianhydrogalactitol (DAD), 5-fluorouracyl (5-FU), and vincristine (VCR) were tested for their effect on the immune response to sheep red blood cells (SRBC) in mice in the Jerne plaque assay. It was found that four of these can act as both immunostimulators and immunosuppressants, depending upon the time elapsing between their application and immunization. VCR was found to be slightly immunopotentiating. Proper combination and timing of injections of DAD and FLE enhanced the immune response over 23fold. Administration of the same drugs in reversed sequence led to an almost complete immune suppression. Repeated injections of some drugs alone or in combination also led to marked or complete immunosuppression. The combined use of drugs and endotoxic lipopolysaccharide (LPS) or its nontoxic, polysaccharide-rich hydrolytic breakdown product (PS) could compensate for some of the immunosuppressive effects. The most striking adjuvant effect was elicited by the combined use of VCR and LPS or VCR and the nontoxic PS preparation.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)9-15
Number of pages7
JournalCancer Immunology Immunotherapy
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - Apr 1979

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Immunology and Allergy
  • Immunology
  • Oncology
  • Cancer Research

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