Current Respiratory Medicine Reviews

Joseph Varon  
The University of Texas Health Science Center
Houston, TX


The Use of Interferons in Respiratory Diseases

Author(s): Ori-Michael J. Benhamou, Miriam Jacobs, Jonathan Drew, Shahar Geva, Maor Waldman and Or Kalchiem-Dekel

Affiliation: Department of Internal Medicine B, Soroka University Medical Center, Beer-Sheva 84101, Israel.

Graphical Abstract:


Interferons (IFNs) are a subclass of lymphocyte-released cytokines that interfere with intracellular viral replication. These drugs are classified into three groups: IFN type 1 (IFN-α, IFN-β, and IFN-ω), IFN type 2 (IFN-γ), and IFN type 3 (IFN-λ). Despite numerous trials, IFN therapy has yet to conclusively demonstrate superiority in the treatment of various pulmonary diseases. In addition to the FDA-approved and ongoing investigational uses for IFN therapy, there is a debate regarding the appropriate dosage of these agents. A retrospective literature review is moving experts towards low-dose therapies in nearly every application of IFN therapy. It is speculated that known and unknown toxicity may limit the beneficial effects of IFN therapy.

Keywords: Asthma, idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis, influenza, interferon.

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Article Details

Page: [318 - 322]
Pages: 5
DOI: 10.2174/1573398X10666140520004706