Published in Cancer Detection and Prevention 1997; 21(1):71-77.

Effect of Krestin as Adjuvant Treatment Following Radical Radiotherapy in Non-Small Cell Lung Cancer Patients

Kazushige Hayakawa MD, Norio Mitsuhashi M.D, Yoshihiro Saito MD, Yuko Nakayama MD, Masaya Furuta MD, Soken Nakamoto MD, Miho Kawashima MD, Hideo Niibe MD

Department of Radiology and Radiation Oncology, Gunma University School of Medicine, Maebashi, Gunma, Japan

Address all correspondence and reprint requests to: Kuzushige Hayakawa MD, and Hideo Niibe, MD, Department of Radiology and Radiation Oncology, Gunma University School of Medicine, 3-39-22 Showa-Machi, Maebashi, Gunma 371, Japan.

ABSTRACT: To evaluate the efficacy of Krestin (PSK) as adjuvant treatment after radical radiation therapy (RT) for non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC), treatment results of 225 patients with NSCLC treated with RT followed by adjuvant administration of PSK between 1976 and 1989 were analyzed. Of these patients, 170 (76%) had squamous cell carcinoma. In the patients with squamous cell carcinoma of the lung, PSK was given only when the tumor showed satisfactory shrinkage (complete or partial response) after completion of RT. The treatment outcomes were compared with those of the responders to RT not receiving PSK. The 5-year survival rates of patients with stages I-II and stage III disease were 39 and 26%, respectively, while the non-administered responder group's were 17 and 8%. These differences are statistically significant. An improvement in the treatment results with combined use of appropriate immuno- modulating drugs is anticipated in the future. When clinical trials of the efficacy of these drugs are conducted, the agents should be given to the patients with satisfactory tumor regression after RT, although they still take much time and cost.

KEY WORDS: Non-small cell lung cancer, squamous cell carcinoma of the lung, radiotherapy, biotherapy, adjuvant immunotherapy.