any of a family of glycoprotein biological response modifiers
used as antineoplastic agents
; they inhibit cellular growth, alter the state of cellular differentiation, have effects on the cell cycle, interfere with oncogene expression, alter cell surface antigen expression, have effects on antibody production, and regulate cytotoxic effector cells.
interferon-α the major interferon produced by virus-induced leukocyte cultures; its primary producer cells are null cells, and its major activities are antiviral activity and activation of NK cells.
a synthetic form of interferon-α produced by recombinant technology that acts as a biologic response modifier
, used in the treatment of veneral warts
, hepatitis B, and chronic hepatitis C and as an antineoplastic in the treatment of hairy cell leukemia
, malignant melanoma
, non-Hodgkin's lymphomas
, multiple myeloma
, mycosis fungoides
, and AIDS-related Kaposi's sarcoma
; administered intramuscularly, subcutaneously, or intralesionally.
a synthetic interferon related to both α and β interferons, produced by recombinant DNA technology; used in the treatment of chronic hepatitis C virus
infection, administered subcutaneously.
a highly purified mixture of natural human interferon proteins that acts as a biologic response modifier
; used in the treatment of venereal warts
, administered intralesionally.
the major interferon produced by double-stranded RNA-induced fibroblast cultures; the major producer cells are fibroblasts
, epithelial cells, and macrophages
, and its major activity is antiviral.
a synthetic form of interferon-β produced by recombinant DNA techniques that acts as a biologic response modifier
; used in the treatment of relapsing forms of multiple sclerosis
; administered intramuscularly.
a synthetic modified form of interferon-β produced by recombinant DNA techniques; used as a biologic response modifier
in the treatment of relapsing forms of multiple sclerosis
; administered subcutaneously.
the major interferon produced by lymphocyte cultures that have been immunologically stimulated by mitogens or antigens; the major producer cells are T lymphocytes
, and its major activity is immunoregulation
in·ter·fer·on (IFN), (in'tĕr-fēr'on),
A class of small (15-28 kD) protein and glycoprotein cytokines (15-28 kD) produced by T cells, fibroblasts, and other cells in response to viral infection and other biologic and synthetic stimuli. IFNs bind to specific receptors on cell membranes. Their effects include inducing enzymes, suppressing cell proliferation, inhibiting viral proliferation, enhancing the phagocytic activity of macrophages, and augmenting the cytotoxic activity of T lymphocytes. Interferons are divided into five major classes (alpha, beta, gamma, tau, and omega) and several subclasses (indicated by Arabic numerals and letters) on the basis of physicochemical properties, cells of origin, mode of induction, and antibody reactions.
[interfere + -on]
Commercially available IFNs are produced by genetically altered colonies of Escherichia coli or Chinese hamster ovary cells, or are induced by controlled viral infection in pooled human leukocytes. Alpha IFNs have found the widest application in medicine. (The spelling alpha is used with respect to naturally occurring interferons. In compliance with international conventions for generic drug names, the spelling alfa appears in names of pharmaceutical formulations.) Alpha IFNs are used in the treatment of chronic hepatitis B and hepatitis C, hairy cell leukemia, chronic myelogenous leukemia, AIDS-related Kaposi sarcoma, melanoma, condylomata acuminata and recurrent respiratory papillomatosis due to human papillomavirus, and infantile hemangiomatosis. About 50% of patients treated for chronic hepatitis B with IFN-alfa show disappearance of hepatitis Be antigen (HBeAg) and reversion of alanine aminotransferase to normal. The response rate in chronic hepatitis C is lower (15-25%), but better results are achieved by using more aggressive therapy (daily rather than thrice weekly administration) and continuing it longer (a minimum of 12 months). Beta IFNs reduce clinical recurrences and progression of myelin damage in multiple sclerosis. Gamma IFN is effective in retarding tissue changes in osteopetrosis and systemic scleroderma and in reducing the frequency and severity of infections in chronic granulomatous disease. Administration of IFNs is parenteral (intravenous, intramuscular, subcutaneous, intranasal, intrathecal, or intralesional) and several weeks of treatment may be required before clinical response is noted. More than 50% of people treated with IFNs experience a flulike syndrome of fatigue, myalgia, and arthralgia. Gastrointestinal and CNS side-effects are also common, and marrow suppression may occur with prolonged treatment.
interferon /in·ter·fer·on/ (IFN) (-fēr´on) any of a family of glycoproteins, production of which can be stimulated by viral infection, by intracellular parasites, by protozoa, and by bacteria and bacterial endotoxins, that exert antiviral activity and have immunoregulatory functions; they also inhibit the growth of nonviral intracellular parasites. Interferons are designated α, β, γ, and ω on the basis of association with certain producer cells and functions; all animal cells, however, can produce interferons and some cells can produce more than one type. Pharmaceutical preparations of natural or synthetic interferons (e.g., i. alfa-2a, i. alfa-2b, i. alfa-n1, i. alfa-n3, i. alfacon-1, i. beta-1a, i. beta-1b, i. gamma-1b ) are used as antineoplastics and biological response modifiers.
1. Any of a group of glycoproteins that are produced by different cell types in response to various stimuli, such as exposure to a virus, bacterium, parasite, or other antigen, and that inhibit infection through mechanisms such as preventing viral replication or regulating the immune system.
2. Any of a group of synthetic glycoproteins that are structurally similar to these compounds and are used therapeutically, especially as antivirals.
Etymology: L, inter + ferire, to strike
a natural glycoprotein formed by cells exposed to a virus or another foreign particle of nucleic acid. It induces the production of translation inhibitory protein (TIP) in noninfected cells. TIP blocks translation of viral RNA, thus giving other cells protection against both the original and other viruses. Interferon is species specific.
Mechanisms of action of interferon
interferon Cell biology A family of immune regulatory proteins–immunomodulators–produced by T cells, fibroblasts, and other cells in response to double-stranded DNA, viruses, mitogens, antigens, or lectins; IFNs ↑ the bactericidal, viricidal and tumoricidal activities of macrophages Types α–20 subtypes, IFN-β–2 subtypes, both produced by macrophages, IFN-γ, IFN-omega, IFN-tau Actions
1. Antiviral, causing those cells playing host to certain viruses–eg, rhinovirus, HPV, and retrovirus to produce proteins that interfere with intracellular viral replication.
2. Antiproliferative, acting by unknown mechanisms, possibly ↓ translation of certain proteins, slowing cell cycling.
Immunomodulatory, stimulating certain immune effects–T-cell activation, maturation of pre-NK cells, and ↑ phagocytosis and cytotoxicity by macrophages Adverse effects Flu-like symptoms, GI tract–N&V, anorexia, diarrhea, dysgeusia, xerostomia, neurologic—confusion, somnolence, poor concentration, seizures, transient aphasia, hallucinations, paranoia, psychoses, cardiopulmonary–tachycardia, dyspnea, orthostatic hypotension, cyanosis, hepatorenal–↑ transaminases, ↑ BUN, proteinuria, hematologic–neutropenia, thrombocytopenia Sx. See Biological response modifier
, MAF, MIF.
in·ter·fer·on (IFN) (in'tĕr-fēr'on)
A class of small protein and glycoprotein cytokines (15-28 kD) produced by T cells, fibroblasts, and other cells in response to viral infection and other biologic and synthetic stimuli. Interferons bind to specific receptors on cell membranes; their effects include inducing enzymes, suppressing cell proliferation, inhibiting viral proliferation, enhancing the phagocytic activity of macrophages, and augmenting the cytotoxic activity of T lymphocytes. Interferons are divided into five major classes (alpha, beta, gamma, tau, and omega) and several subclasses (indicated by Arabic numerals and letters) on the basis of physicochemical properties, cells of origin, mode of induction, and antibody reactions.
interferon a glycoprotein produced by cells in response to viral attack, whose function seems to be the triggering ofviral interference defence mechanisms in uninfected cells of the same species in which it was produced. Since it has been suggested that interferon might prove effective against viral diseases by inhibiting viral multiplication, and even some forms of cancer, strenuous efforts have been made to isolate sufficient quantities with which to run clinical trials. The problem of production has now been solved by GENETIC ENGINEERING but the results of trials are inconclusive, so far.
A protein formed when cells are exposed to a virus. Interferon causes other noninfected cells to develop translation inhibitory protein (TIP). TIP blocks viruses from infecting new cells.
interferon; IFN a cytokine
in·ter·fer·on (IFN) (in'tĕr-fēr'on)
A class of small protein and glycoprotein cytokines produced by T cells, fibroblasts, and other cells in response to viral infection and other biologic and synthetic stimuli.
n a small class of glycoproteins capable of exerting antiviral activity in homologous cells through metabolic processes involving synthesis of RNA.
n a type formed by leukocytes in response to viral infection or by stimulation with double-stranded RNA. These protein products are used as antineoplastic agents. Specifically used as an antineoplastic agent for the treatment of Kaposi's sarcoma in AIDS patients. See also interferon alfa-2a.
interferon alfa-2a/interferon alfa-2b/interferon alfa-n1/interferon alfa-n3
n brand names: Roferon-A, Intron-A, Alferon N;
drug class: biologic response modifier;
action: antiviral action inhibits viral replication by reprogramming virus; antitumor action suppresses cell proliferation; immunomodulating action phagacytizes target cells;
uses: hairy-cell leukemia in persons older than 18 years, metastatic melanoma, AIDS, Kaposi's sarcoma, bladder carcinoma, lymphomas, malignant myeloma, mycosis fungoides.
n a type formed by fibroblasts by stimulation similar to the alpha form.
n a type formed by lymphocytes in response to mitogenic stimulation. See also interferon gamma-1b.
n brand name: Actimmune;
drug class: biologic response modifier;
action: species-specific protein synthesized in response to viruses, enhances antibody-dependent cellular cytotoxicity, enhances natural killer cell activity;
uses: serious infections associated with chronic granulomatous disease.
Patient discussion about interferon
Q. aftrer completing interferon treatment for HCV it's showing up negitive in blood test,does it get any better? I completed Interferon treatment for HCV four years ago. It has come negitive in my blood work scence. Does it get any better?
I;m haveing a hard time building my stamina back up to pre treatment
Is there any hope of getting it back, my strenth and stamina?
I'm 65 yrs. and counting. I'd like to count a lot longer.
Thak You in advance,
A. Unfortunately, the risk of chronic infection after an acute episode of hepatitis C is high. In most studies, 80 to 100 percent of patients remain HCV-RNA positive, and 60 to 80 percent have persistently elevated liver enzymes. The rate of spontaneous clearance of virus after it has persisted for at least six months is very low. In one study, for example, 142 HCV antibody-negative patients during eight years of follow-up, showed seroconversion (going from negative to positive) in 30 percent. You should keep getting tested on a regular basis, and hopefully your antibodies will remain negative. Meanwhile focus on living a otherwise healthy life. If you eat properyly and exercise often you can bulid up some energy that you feel you've lost.More discussions about interferon