Unimpaired ability to generate adherent lymphokine-activated killer (A-LAK) cells in patients with primary or metastatic liver tumors

R. E. Schwarz, S. Iwatsuki, R. B. Herberman, T. L. Whiteside

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

5 Scopus citations


Adherent lymphokine-activated killer cells (A-LAK cells) obtained from human peripheral blood mononuclear cells represent a population of potent antitumor effectors enriched in interleukin-2(IL-2)-activated natural killer cells. This study shows that A-LAK cells can be successfully generated from the blood of patients with liver cancer not treated with adjuvant chemotherapy or irradiation. Mononuclear cells were isolated from the blood of 33 patients with liver tumors (6 benign, 10 primary malignant, 17 metastatic) at the time of liver resection. A-LAK cells were separated by adherence to plastic following activation of peripheral blood mononuclear cells in 1000 U/ml recombinant IL-2. A-LAK cells (enriched up to 92% in CD3-CD56+ cells) showed better subsequent expansion and two to six times higher antitumor cytotoxicity per cell than unseparated LAK cells cultured under the same conditions. The ability to generate A-LAK cells with superior in vitro cytotoxicity from the blood of most patients with liver cancer indicates that adoptive cellular immunotherapy may be a feasible and new way of treatment for primary and secondary hepatic neoplasms in man.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)312-316
Number of pages5
JournalCancer Immunology Immunotherapy
Issue number5
StatePublished - Sep 1 1989


ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Immunology and Allergy
  • Immunology
  • Oncology
  • Cancer Research

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