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Hoffmann, R. A wiki for the life sciences where authorship matters. Nature Genetics (2008)

Ineffectiveness of interferon-gamma in the treatment of idiopathic myelofibrosis: a pilot study.

It has been proposed that interferon-gamma (IFN) inhibits collagen synthesis in myeloproliferative disorders through an inhibitory effect on PDGF and TGF-beta. We therefore evaluated the role of IFN-gamma on bone marrow fibrosis in idiopathic myelofibrosis (IMF). After a 3-month observation period, nine patients (five female, four male), median age 64 years (range 43-72 years), received 3 x 3 mU IFN-gamma/week over 6 months and were monitored after withdrawal of IFN-gamma for further 3 months. Three out of nine patients have completed the study according to the protocol. Six patients had to be withdrawn from IFN-gamma due to the following reasons: bacterial infection (three patients), splenic infarction or deterioration of splenomegaly (one patient, each) and refusal to continue IFN-gamma (one patient). Results from seven patients treated for at least 8 weeks were considered measurable. Leukopenia, initially present in one of the evaluated patients, deteriorated during IFN-gamma treatment. This patient died during the observation period shortly after withdrawal of the therapy as a result of septicemia. Transfusion-dependent anemia, initially observed in two of the evaluated patients, deteriorated during the IFN-gamma treatment. Bone marrow fibrosis increased in three patients, whereas it remained unchanged in another and improved in a further patient. Splenomegaly improved in two patients but deteriorated markedly in one. Taking these observations together, four patients had disease progression during IFN-gamma treatment, two had stable disease and one could be qualified as a partial responder. According to these data IFN-gamma cannot be considered as a treatment option for patients with IMF.[1]


  1. Ineffectiveness of interferon-gamma in the treatment of idiopathic myelofibrosis: a pilot study. Heis-Vahidi-Fard, N., Forberg, E., Eichinger, S., Chott, A., Lechner, K., Gisslinger, H. Ann. Hematol. (2001) [Pubmed]
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