Cancer-fighting protein is built, sans toxic side effects

January 9, 2019

Cancer-fighting protein is built, sans toxic side effects

Interleukin-2 (IL-2) is a molecule that amps up immune cells to fight off infections. While it is effective, the problem with IL-2 is that it causes a lot of toxicity in patients. Researchers at the Institute for Protein Design at the University of Washington School of Medicine created a molecule that's a "better version" of IL-2, one where those side effects are mediated.

"In this specific case, we believe this drug has considerable promise as a cancer therapy and we’re hoping to get in the clinic in a few years and when it gets there hopefully it can save lives," says David Baker, director of IPD.

He discusses the impact of these findings and what's next for furthering this research. See the news release here


Terms of appropriate usage of file downloads

  • News reporters and news organizations may freely republish and distribute videos, still images and audio files produced by UW Medicine and the University of Washington School of Medicine.
  • Works must be attributed/credited appropriately (for example, “UW Medicine” – as denoted in the file) and must not be used for commercial purposes.
  • These visual and audio files may not be used to exploit or misrepresent UW Medicine or the University of Washington.
  • UW Medicine often licenses still images from Thinkstock but cannot grant republishing rights. You may not republish single image files credited to Thinkstock.
  • Logos of UW Medicine and University of Washington Health Sciences schools may not be republished without explicit permission. Contact us by phone or email: 206.543.3620 or