A trial of interleukin-2 with or without histamine dihydrochloride in advanced kidney cancer

Cancer type:

Kidney cancer
Renal cell carcinoma




Phase 2

This trial looked at interleukin-2 (IL-2) and histamine dihydrochloride for advanced renal cell cancer, a type of kidney cancer.

Interleukin 2 (IL-2) is a type of biological therapy. Doctors sometimes use it to treat advanced kidney cancer.

When this trial started at the end of 1990s doctors thought that another drug, histamine dihydrochloride (HDC), may help IL-2 to work better. In this trial, some people had IL-2 alone, and some had IL-2 and histamine dihydrochloride.

The aim of this trial was to find out if IL-2 and histamine dihydrochloride was better for advanced kidney cancer that IL-2 alone.

Summary of results

This trial showed that there was no benefit in giving histamine dihydrochloride (HDC) as well as interleukin 2 (IL-2) for advanced renal cell cancer.

This trial recruited 41 people,

  • 20 had interleukin 2 alone
  • 21 had interleukin 2 and histamine dihydrochloride

The research team looked at

  • How well renal cell cancer responded to treatment
  • How many people had signs that their cancer had continued to grow
  • The number of people alive a year after treatment.

They found that there was no difference between the 2 groups in any of these.

They found that the side effects were generally mild or moderate, although a small number of people had more severe side effects.

A trial done in Denmark around the same time showed slightly more promising results. So the research team concluded that more work should be done to help decide if histamine dihydrochloride was useful or not.

We have based this summary on information from the team who ran the trial. The information they sent us has been reviewed by independent specialists (peer reviewed Open a glossary item) and published in a medical journal. The figures we quote above were provided by the trial team. We have not analysed the data ourselves.

Recruitment start:

Recruitment end:

How to join a clinical trial

Please note: In order to join a trial you will need to discuss it with your doctor, unless otherwise specified.

Please note - unless we state otherwise in the summary, you need to talk to your doctor about joining a trial.

Chief Investigator

Prof Mark Middleton

Supported by

Maxim Pharmaceuticals
The Christie NHS Foundation Trust

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Freephone 0808 800 4040

Last review date

CRUK internal database number:

Oracle - 185

Please note - unless we state otherwise in the summary, you need to talk to your doctor about joining a trial.

Around 1 in 5 people take part in clinical trials

3 phases of trials

Around 1 in 5 people diagnosed with cancer in the UK take part in a clinical trial.

Last reviewed:

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