Development of Interferon in MPN Therapy

Interferon Alfa as a Treatment for Myeloproliferative Neoplasms

CR&T and the work of our founder, Dr. Richard T. Silver, have been instrumental in the development of interferon alfa as a treatment for polycythemia vera and other myeloproliferative neoplasms (MPNs).

Over the past four decades, Dr. Silver has been widely recognized as a pioneer and driving force in interferon for MPN therapy, significantly advancing treatments through clinical investigation, research and publishing. Prior to Dr. Silver’s work, there were no known acceptable treatments for myeloproliferative neoplasms—neoplasms characterized by overactivity of bone marrow.

Interferon alfa, a drug with antifibrotic and hemalogic effects, stops stem cell cycling in bone marrow. Through the work of Dr. Silver and others, it has been shown that when used appropriately in low doses, interferon has very specific effects and is the only MPN treatment known to stop or reverse disease of the bone marrow.

CR&T funded research on the use of interferon also led to the discovery of the janus kinase 2 (commonly called JAK2)—an important gene in MPN research. By inhibiting the JAK2 gene, interferon offers improved treatment options and new hope for patients suffering from polycythemia vera and other myeloproliferative neoplasms.

In the video below, Dr. Silver discusses the use of interferons in MPNs.