Classifications: immunomodulator; interferon; antineoplastic; Therapeutic: immunomodulator; interferon; antineoplastic
Prototype: Interferon alfa-2a
Pregnancy Category: C
100 mcg (2 million IU)/0.5 mL vial
Antiviral: Has potent phagocyte-activating effects that include stimulating macrophages and generation of toxic oxygen metabolites
(i.e., free radicals) capable of destroying virally infected cells. Antineoplastic: It also exerts antitumor effects by increasing expression of tumor suppressor genes and activating macrophages to lyse
tumor cells. Immunomodulatory: Interferon gamma is produced by T-cells and natural killer (NK) cells after activation with immune or inflammatory stimuli.
Interferon gamma stimulates macrophages to increase IL-12 and TNF-alpha production, which enhances interferon gamma synthesis.
Interleukin-10 downregulates interferon gamma production by NK and T-cells by preventing macrophage secretion of IL-12 and
Is a naturally occurring cytokine with antiviral, immunomodulatory, and antiproliferative activity. It enhances phagocyte
function in chronic granulomatous disease and improves killing of viruses; also enhances osteoclast function in malignant
Chronic granulomatous disease, severe malignant osteopetrosis.
Idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis, refractory mycobacterium infection, ovarian cancer.
Hypersensitivity to interferon gamma or products derived from E. coli; pregnancy (category C); lactation.
Preexisting cardiac disease, CHF, cardiac arrhythmias; seizure disorders and compromised CNS function; myelosuppression.
Safety and efficacy in infants <1 y are not established.
Route & Dosage
|Chronic Granulomatous Disease, Osteopetrosis
Adult/Child: SC BSA ≥0.5 m2, 50 mcg/m2 3 times weekly
Adult/Child: SC BSA ≤0.5 m2, 1.5 mcg/kg 3 times weekly
Idiopathic Pulmonary Fibrosis
Adult: SC 180200 mcg 3 times weekly
- Note: Pretreatment (4 h before) with acetaminophen is recommended to reduce headache, myalgia, and fever. Treatment should be
continued 24 h postinjection.
- Do not shake vial. Inject SC undiluted into right or left deltoid area or anterior thigh area.
- Avoid intradermal or IV injection. Rotate injection sites.
- Store 2°8° C (36°46° F); do not freeze. Discard any unused portions or any vial left at room
temperature for >12 h.
Adverse Effects (≥1%)Body as a Whole: Fever, fatigue, chills,
, night sweats. CNS: Headache,
altered mental status, ataxia, confusion, dizziness, Parkinsonian symptoms
, disorientation, seizures, hallucinations. CV:
Heart block, heart failure, DVT, hypotension, MI,
syncope, tachyarrhythmia. GI: Nausea, vomiting, diarrhea. Hematologic: Leukopenia, thrombocytopenia. Respiratory:
embolism, tachypnea. Skin:
Local skin necrosis at injection site, pain at injection site, rash. Urogenital:
Use cautiously with amiophylline, fosphenytoin, phenytoin, theophylline, warfarin.
90% absorbed from SC site. Peak:
7 h. Half-Life:
Assessment & Drug Effects
- Monitor CV status frequently. Report promptly severe hypotension and/or syncope.
- Monitor for and report S&S of infection.
- Lab tests: Baseline and at 3 mo CBC with differential and platelet counts; complete blood chemistry (including renal and
liver function tests), and urinalysis.
Patient & Family Education
- Report promptly: skin rash, itching, unusual weakness or tiredness, chest pain or palpitations, or signs of an infection.
- Do not accept vaccination with a live vaccine during or for 3 mo following the end of therapy.