Immunotherapy for gastrointestinal cancer: current status and strategies for improving efficacy

Elkord, E, Hawkins, R and Stern, P 2008, 'Immunotherapy for gastrointestinal cancer: current status and strategies for improving efficacy' , Expert opinion on Biological Therapy, 8 (4) , pp. 385-395.

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BACKGROUND: Despite improvement in conventional strategies for treating gastrointestinal (GI) carcinoma, large numbers of patients still suffer from incurable or progressive disease. OBJECTIVE: Here we consider the prospects for circumventing limitations and maximising the efficacy of different immunotherapies. METHODS: We summarise different cancer vaccines and targeted drugs and highlight the scientific rationale of using immunotherapy for targeting GI cancers, in addition to the potential strategies for improving immunotherapeutic efficacy. RESULTS/CONCLUSION: Many cancer vaccines and antibody-directed therapies have been tested in early phase clinical trials and demonstrated proof of concept and safety. As yet few have been properly evaluated for clinical efficacy; although adoptive transfer of tumour-associated-antigen-specific T cells has shown dramatic clinical responses in some patients. The recognition of a role for T regulatory cells in limiting anti-tumour immunity has provided momentum for developing strategies to over-ride such immunoinhibitory effects. There is some evidence that conventional therapies may work by influencing these negative factors and allowing expression of immune control mechanisms. An important developing area for clinical evaluation is the testing of combined conventional and immunotherapeutic modalities which may provide for synergy; thereby circumventing the limitations of individualised treatments and generating additional clinical benefits

Item Type: Article
Themes: Health and Wellbeing
Schools: Schools > School of Environment and Life Sciences > Biomedical Research Centre
Schools > School of Environment and Life Sciences
Journal or Publication Title: Expert opinion on Biological Therapy
Publisher: Informa Healthcare
Refereed: Yes
ISSN: 1471-2598
Depositing User: E Elkord
Date Deposited: 13 Oct 2011 09:21
Last Modified: 16 Feb 2022 13:01

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