An attractive, but as yet generally unrealized, approach to cancer therapy concerns discovering agents that change the state of differentiation of the cancer cells. Recently, we discovered a phenomenon that we call "receptor pleiotropism" in which agonist antibodies against known receptors induce cell fates that are very different from those induced by the natural agonist to the same receptor. Here, we show that one can take advantage of this phenomenon to convert acute myeloblastic leukemic cells into natural killer cells. Upon induction with the antibody, these leukemic cells enter into a differentiation cascade in which as many as 80% of the starting leukemic cells can be differentiated. The antibody-induced killer cells make large amounts of perforin, IFN-γ, and granzyme B and attack and kill other members of the leukemic cell population. Importantly, induction of killer cells is confined to transformed cells, in that normal bone marrow cells are not induced to form killer cells. Thus, it seems possible to use agonist antibodies to change the differentiation state of cancer cells into those that attack and kill other members of the malignant clone from which they originate.