Assays for monitoring cellular immune responses to active immunotherapy of cancer.
Numerous cancer immunotherapy strategies are currently being tested in clinical trials. Although clinical efficacy will be the final test of these approaches, the long and complicated developmental pathway for these agents necessitates evaluating immunological responses as intermediate markers of the most likely candidates for success. This has emphasized the need for assays that accurately detect and quantitate T cell-mediated, antigen-specific immune responses. This review evaluates the currently used in vivo and in vitro methods of assessing T-cell number and function, including delayed-type hypersensitivity, tetramer analysis, ELISPOT, flow cytometry-based analysis of cytokine expression, and PCR-based detection of T-cell receptor gene usage or cytokine production. We provide examples of how each has been used to monitor recent clinical trials and a discussion of how well each correlates with clinical outcome.
Clay, TM; Hobeika, AC; Mosca, PJ; Lyerly, HK; Morse, MA
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