last updated 21-06-2024



Interferons (IFN-α 2a and IFN-α 2b) are cytokines that possess antiviral and immunomodulating actions. Interferons for therapeutical applications are produced via recombinant DNA technologies in manipulated E. coli strains. Interferons “mark” infected cells by binding to the cell membrane of virus-infected cells, initiate complex actions inside the cell that prevent viral replication and activate the immune system.

Interferons are administered via intramuscular, intravenous or subcutaneous injection. Elimination from the blood relates to distribution, cellular uptake and catabolism in liver and kidney. Adverse effects of interferons are acute influenza-like symptoms. In higher doses, interferons can cause myelosuppression.
See also the interferon therapy in hepatitis.


Which of the following is true regarding treatment with interferon therapy?


Interferons are cytokines that inhibit viral replication indirectly. 


Interferons are most effective when orally administered


Interferons have minor adverse effects, because they are produced by recombinant DNA technology.