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Tumor necrosis factor TNF

Tumor necrosis factor alpha (TNF-a) is a protein that is present in any inflammatory process, regardless of etiology and location. The blood component was identified in 1975, and since 1984 it has been carefully studied in clinical settings.

What is TNF

Tumor necrosis factor is a cytokine hormone-like protein produced by blood cells (white blood cells) as a natural anti-inflammatory, antiviral and antiparasitic agent.
The importance of TNF research cannot be overestimated. Cytokine protein is one of the main “building blocks” of human immunological defense against viruses, fungi, and infections. In addition, it plays an important role in cancer, allowing tumor growth to be controlled.

Over the past decades, good results have been obtained from the use of a combination of recombinant TNF and chemotherapeutic drugs used to treat cancers of the extremities (sarcoma, melanoma), as well as in isolated hepatic perfusion (IHP) in inoperable patients.

The result of many years of research was the registration of TNF drugs in the EU in 2006. However, this is far from the limit. Today, scientists in advanced laboratories continue to study and develop tumor necrosis factor derivatives with low systemic toxicity.

Russian scientists have not ignored TNF research. In 1990, a revolutionary medical drug was created in the Russian Federation, obtained by merging the protein compounds TNF and Thymosin-a1. Due to the special composition, the products are distinguished by such characteristics as:
  • enhanced immunostimulating properties;
  • reduced toxicity;
  • maintained high antitumor activity.

Mechanisms of antitumor action of TNF

TNF is a specific anti-inflammatory protein that acts on the tumor cell through special receptors. According to research, there are several main methods of influence.

1. The first is the launch of the process of apoptosis, which is expressed in:
a.) Cytotoxic effects, when mutated cells are destroyed
b.) Cytostatic effect, which is expressed in the cessation of cell division (cell cycle arrest), as well as the expression of specific antigens.

2. The second mechanism is to activate the blood coagulation system and trigger a local inflammatory reaction. As a result of exposure to TNF cells, “hemorrhagic” necrosis of tumor areas occurs.

3. The third method of action of cytokine proteins is to block the process of angiogenesis. Due to this, in the body of a rapidly growing tumor, the percentage of germination of new vessels is reduced, and existing ones are damaged, which leads to a decrease in the blood supply to the cancerous tumor, as well as its necrosis. The paradox is that healthy vessels remain intact.

4. The peculiarity of the fourth mechanism is the cytotoxic effect of cells of the immune system, on the surface of which there are TNF molecules, on the area of inflammation.

Features of the antitumor effect of TNF

Of course, no one claims that TNF is a panacea for all types of cancer. Methods of practical application are checked and tested more than once, the results are subject to constant verification.

In particular, it has been proven that IFN-gamma blocks the NF-kB signaling pathway and also activates the process of apoptosis (programmed cell death). By combining interferon-gamma with tumor necrosis factor, the effect of their antitumor effect is increased many times over. This result cannot be achieved with any single cytokine.

Cytokine therapy for oncology

Cytokinegenetic cancer therapy is based on the results of many years of clinical research. The drug created by our research center, consisting of TNF cells and IFN-gamma, gave amazing results. In particular, it has been proven that the products:
  • It can reverse the resistance of tumor cells to chemotherapy or, conversely, enhance their effect on areas of inflammation.
  • It is characterized by specific cytotoxicity to L-929 fibrosarcoma cells in the amount of 2,000,000 units per 1 mg of protein.
  • Demonstrates enhanced immunostimulating effects.
  • Provides a higher level of cytotoxic and cytostatic effects on tumor cells compared to natural TNF.
  • It has reduced systemic toxicity - almost 100 times less compared to natural cytokine. Confirmed by clinical trials at the Russian Cancer Research Center. N. N. Blokhin (Moscow) and the Oncology Research Institute named after. N. N. Petrova (St. Petersburg).
  • It can be used in different doses, since a dose-dependent effect is observed on some types of tumor cells, but not on others.
  • Does not inhibit the functioning of the excretory and hematopoietic systems, stimulating the work of specific antitumor immunity.
  • Suitable for use in combination with traditional types of therapy: chemical, radiotherapy.
Drug for cytokinegenetic therapy, consisting of recombinant TNF and Thymosin-α1, following the results of three full stages of clinical trials, was officially registered as a medicine in March 2009. The potential for its therapeutic as well as preventive action is enormous, so research work continues to this day.

How to be treated with cytokinogenetic drugs for oncology? What to do if a patient’s tumor cells demonstrate exceptional resistance to drugs? You can get answers to these and other questions during a consultation with our specialists. Call and make an appointment.

Author of the article:

Aleksanyan Aleksan Zavenovich

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