Prometheus Laboratories | Aldesleukin (Medication)


Aldesleukin is a man-made protein that has the same actions as native human interleukin-2. Interleukins are the messengers by which white blood cells communicate with each other to coordinate inflammation and immunity. Among its actions, they increase the number and activities of certain types of white blood cells called lymphocytes, monocytes, and macrophages that are involved in inflammation and immunity.

Lymphocytes fight viral infections, regulate the immune system, and fight cancers. The exact mechanism by which aldesleukin fights tumors is unknown. Aldesleukin is a cancer medication that interferes with tumor growth. Aldesleukin is used to treat kidney cancer or skin cancer than has spread to other parts of the body. ...

Side Effect:

When given as an infusion into a vein (intravenously), aldesleukin causes side effects in almost every organ. Because of these side effects, aldesleukin can only be given to patients who are physically and mentally able to tolerate them.

Most of the side effects are due to capillary leak which begins immediately after treatment is started. Capillary leak results in the leakage of proteins out of blood. This causes a loss of fluid from the blood, a decrease in the volume of blood, and a decrease in blood pressure. The decrease in blood pressure can be dramatic and even result in death. More than two-thirds of patients require injectable medications to treat the low blood pressure. ...


You should not receive this medication if you are allergic to aldesleukin or interleukin-2, or if you have a bacterial infection, if you have received an organ transplant, or if you have recently had abnormal lung or heart function tests.

You may not be able to receive aldesleukin if prior treatment with this medication caused chest pain, irregular heart rhythm, a build-up of fluid around your heart, kidney failure, seizures, psychosis, stomach or intestinal bleeding, or if you needed a breathing tube.

Before you receive aldesleukin, tell your doctor if you have a heart disorder or history of heart attack, breathing problems, kidney or liver disease, gallbladder disease, high levels of calcium in your blood, a thyroid disorder, diabetes, seizures, mental illness, neurologic problems, or an autoimmune disorder (arthritis, Crohn's disease, scleroderma, myasthenia gravis, or skin disorder). There are many other drugs that can interact with aldesleukin. Tell your doctor about all medications you use. ...