Adjuvant immunotherapy and chemoimmunotherapy in colorectal cancer of the Dukes' C classification. Preliminary clinical results

Giora M. Mavligit, Jordan U. Gutterman, Michael A. Burgess, Nayerh Khankhanian, G. Burton Seibert, John F. Speer, Richard C. Reed, Andre V. Jubert, Richard C. Martin, Charles M. McBride, Edward M. Copeland, Edmund A. Gehan, Evan M. Hersh

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24 Scopus citations


Fifty‐eight patients with Dukes' C classification of carcinoma of the large bowel were placed on adjuvant immuno‐ or chemoimmunotherapy with Bacillus calmette guerin (BCG) or combination of 5‐fluorouracil (5‐FU) plus BCG following primary and definitive surgery, and were followed for up to 21 months. Of twenty‐six patients receiving BCG alone by scarification, five have relapsed with 75% of freedom from disease estimated at 15.1 months compared with 10.1 months in a group of carefully selected historical controls who had surgery alone (p = 0.12). The survival of all patients receiving BCG alone has not reached the 75 percentile yet, and the difference from controls is currently estimated at the 18% level. The combination of 5‐FU plus BCG (studied in 32 patients) may be superior to BCG alone at this time, in that it appears to more effectively protect against tumor recurrence (75 percentile not yet reached compared to control, (p. = 0.08). The survival of patients on 5‐FU plus BCG also appears to be improved (p = 0.09). No patients have expired compared to a 75 percentile survival of 16.6 months in the control. Serial determination of plasma CEA was crucial in the clinical follow‐up of these patients. Frequent CEA determinations have led to early detection of clinical relapse. In the absence of any other unequivocal signs of relapse a persistent and progressive elevation of CEA suggests tumor recurrence with a high degree of probability in patients with past history of cancer of the large bowel.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)2421-2427
Number of pages7
Issue number6 S
StatePublished - Dec 1975
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Oncology
  • Cancer Research


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