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Effects of opioids on immunologic parameters that are relevant to anti-tumour immune potential in patients with cancer: A systematic literature review

Boland, J. W.; McWilliams, K.; Ahmedzai, S. H.; Pockley, A. G.

Authors

J. W. Boland

K. McWilliams

S. H. Ahmedzai

A. G. Pockley



Abstract

Background: The immune system has a central role in controlling cancer, and factors that influence protective antitumour immunity could therefore have a significant impact on the course of malignant disease. Opioids are essential for the management of cancer pain, and preclinical studies indicate that opioids have the potential to influence these tumour immune surveillance mechanisms. The aim of this systematic literature review is to evaluate the clinical effects of opioids on the immune system of patients with cancer. Methods: A systematic search of Ovid MEDLINE (PubMed) and Embase, Cochrane database and Web of Knowledge for clinical studies, which evaluated the effects of opioids on the immune system in patients with cancer, was performed. Results: Five human studies, which have assessed the effects of opioids on the immune system in patients with cancer, were identified. Although all of these evaluated the effect of morphine on immunologic end points in patients with cancer, none measured the clinical effects. Conclusions: Evidence from preclinical, healthy volunteer and surgical models suggests that different opioids variably influence protective anti-tumour immunity; however, actual data derived from cancer populations are inconclusive and definitive recommendations cannot be made. Appropriately designed and powered studies assessing clinical outcomes of opioid use in people with cancer are therefore required to inform oncologists and others involved in cancer care about the rational use of opioids in this patient group.

Citation

Boland, J. W., McWilliams, K., Ahmedzai, S. H., & Pockley, A. G. (2014). Effects of opioids on immunologic parameters that are relevant to anti-tumour immune potential in patients with cancer: A systematic literature review. The British journal of cancer / Cancer Research Campaign, 111(5), (866-873). doi:10.1038/bjc.2014.384. ISSN 0007-0920

Journal Article Type Review
Acceptance Date Jun 10, 2014
Online Publication Date Jul 15, 2014
Publication Date 2014-08
Deposit Date Aug 27, 2015
Publicly Available Date Nov 23, 2017
Journal British journal of cancer
Print ISSN 0007-0920
Electronic ISSN 1532-1827
Publisher Cancer Research UK
Peer Reviewed Peer Reviewed
Volume 111
Issue 5
Pages 866-873
DOI https://doi.org/10.1038/bjc.2014.384
Keywords Cancer Research; Oncology
Public URL https://hull-repository.worktribe.com/output/378134
Publisher URL http://www.nature.com/bjc/journal/v111/n5/full/bjc2014384a.html
Copyright Statement This work is licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-Share Alike 3.0 Unported License
Additional Information Copy of article first published in: British journal of cancer, 2014, v.111

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Publisher Licence URL
https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-sa/3.0/

Copyright Statement
This work is licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-Share Alike 3.0 Unported License





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