Immunotherapy of metastases enhances subsequent chemotherapy

See allHide authors and affiliations

Science  23 Jul 1982:
Vol. 217, Issue 4557, pp. 367-369
DOI: 10.1126/science.6283635


In many multimodal therapies of cancer, postsurgical chemotherapy is administered before immunotherapy for treatment of micrometastatic disease. This sequence may not be the most efficacious. Experiments in which strain 2 guinea pigs bearing syngeneic L10 hepatocarcinomas were given immunotherapy showed that infiltrating immune effector cells not only were tumoricidal but disrupted the characteristically compact structure of metastatic foci. When cytotoxic drugs were administered at the peak of this inflammatory response, the survival rate of the guinea pigs increased significantly. We conclude that postsurgical immunotherapy can enhance the effect of cytotoxic drugs administered subsequently.