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Harnessing immunosurveillance: current developments and future directions in cancer immunotherapy

Authors Drakes ML, Stiff P

Received 11 August 2014

Accepted for publication 18 September 2014

Published 4 December 2014 Volume 2014:3 Pages 151—165


Checked for plagiarism Yes

Review by Single-blind

Peer reviewer comments 2

Editor who approved publication: Professor Michael Shurin

Video abstract presented by Drakes ML.

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Maureen L Drakes, Patrick J Stiff

Department of Medicine, Division of Hematology and Oncology, Stritch School of Medicine, Loyola University Chicago, Maywood, IL, USA

Abstract: Despite improved methods of cancer detection and disease management over the last few decades, cancer remains a major public health problem in many societies. Conventional therapies, such as chemotherapy, radiation, and surgery, are not usually sufficient to prevent disease recurrence. Therefore, efforts have been focused on developing novel therapies to manage metastatic disease and to prolong disease-free and overall survival, by modulating the immune system to alleviate immunosuppression, and to enhance antitumor immunity. This review discusses protumor mechanisms in patients that circumvent host immunosurveillance, and addresses current immunotherapy modalities designed to target these mechanisms. Given the complexity of cancer immunosuppressive mechanisms, we propose that identification of novel disease biomarkers will drive the development of more targeted immunotherapy. Finally, administration of different classes of immunotherapy in combination regimens, will be the ultimate route to impact low survival rates in advanced cancer patients.

Keywords: cancer, immunotherapy, immunosurveillance, immunosuppression, dendritic cells, T-cells

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