Neutrophil function during chemotherapy for Hodgkin's disease


Simultaneous measurement of neutrophil migration, phagocytic activity, candidacidal and bactericidal activity were made during quadruple chemotherapy of advanced Hodgkin's disease (HD). Measurements were also made in normal individuals, hospital patients not on chemotherapy, untreated patients with advanced HD and patients off chemotherapy for over a year. Neutrophil migratory activity was usually normal in untreated HD patients and those on chemotherapy, but less than 20% of all tests showed depressed values, some of which were corrected by plasma. Similar results were found with neutrophil phagocytosis. Abnormalities in these functions were found in both early and late cycles, but there was a tendency for migration to deteriorate during later chemotherapy cycles. Neutrophil candidacidal and bactericidal activity were frequently depressed in patients on treatment and there was deterioration in candidacidal activity during the chemotherapy cycle. These abnormalities of killing activity were frequently corrected in control plasma. Neutrophil function is normal in most patients with advanced HD and in patients in remission. In a minority of patients on treatment there are marked functional defects, especially in killing activity. These defects are partly cell-associated and partly plasma-related. Susceptibility to infection during chemotherapy of HD may be partly due to defective neutrophil function.

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Gandossini, M., Souhami, R., Babbage, J. et al. Neutrophil function during chemotherapy for Hodgkin's disease. Br J Cancer 44, 863–871 (1981) doi:10.1038/bjc.1981.285

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