Adoptive immunotherapy for malignant glioma.
Despite remarkable advancements in imaging modalities and treatment options available to patients diagnosed with malignant brain tumors, the prognosis for those with high-grade lesions remains poor. The imprecise mechanisms of currently available treatments to manage these tumors do not spare damage to the normal surrounding brain and often result in major cognitive and motor deficits. Immunotherapy holds the promise of offering a potent, yet targeted, treatment to patients with brain tumors, with the potential to eradicate the malignant tumor cells without damaging normal tissues. The T cells of the immune system are uniquely capable of recognizing the altered protein expression patterns within tumor cells and mediating their destruction through a variety of effector mechanisms. Adoptive T-cell therapy is an attempt to harness and amplify the tumor-eradicating capacity of a patients' own T cells and then return these effectors to the patient in such a state that they effectively eliminate residual tumor. Although this approach is not new to the field of tumor immunology, new advancements in our understanding of T-cell activation and function and breakthroughs in tumor antigen discovery hold great promise for the translation of this modality into a clinical success.
Mitchell, DA; Fecci, PE; Sampson, JH
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