Coadministration of zidovudine and interleukin-2 increases absolute CD4 cells in subjects with walter reed stage 2 human immunodeficiency virus infection: Results of ACTG protocol 042

John A. Bartlett, Cindy Berend, Gina R. Petroni, Janet Ottinger, Douglas Tyler, Carla Pettinelli, Kent J. Weinhold

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

14 Scopus citations


Interleukin-2 (IL-2) can increase numbers of absolute CD4 cells in persons infected with the human immunodeficiency virus who are receiving antiretroviral therapy. Twenty-five subjects with >400/mm3 absolute CD4 cells received zidovudine and low-dose intravenous or subcutaneous IL-2 (≤106 U/m2). Absolute CD4 cells increased significantly during IL-2 treatment, and 56% of the subjects achieved a maximal increase of ≤500 cells/mm3. A dose-response relationship favored increasing IL-2 doses, and subcutaneous delivery offered greater increases than intravenous administration. Fifteen subjects had persistent increases of ≤ 100 cells/mm3 6 weeks after IL-2 was discontinued. No changes occurred in delayed-type hypersensitivity or helper T cell responses to recall antigens. Cell-mediated cytotoxicities increased against Daudi cells. IL-2 was well tolerated and only 1 subject required dose reduction. Relatively low-dose IL- 2 delivered by subcutaneous or intravenous routes may provide an important complement to antiretroviral therapy to increase absolute CD4 cells with the potential for less toxicity than with higher IL-2 doses.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1170-1173
Number of pages4
JournalJournal of Infectious Diseases
Issue number4
StatePublished - 1998
Externally publishedYes


ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health
  • Immunology

Cite this