Cancer immunotherapy: the beginning of the end of cancer?
Checkpoint blockade immunotherapy and its combination with other (immune) therapeutic modalities are the leading path to increased therapeutic success across a whole range of tumor types.
These are exciting times for cancer immunotherapy. After many years of disappointing results, tide has finally changed and immunotherapy has become a clinically validated treatment for many cancers. Immunotherapeutic strategies include cancer vaccines, oncolytic viruses, adoptive transfer of ex vivo activated T and natural killer cells, and administration of antibodies or recombinant proteins that either costimulate cells or block the so-called immune checkpoint pathways.
The recent success of several immunotherapeutic regimens, such as the monoclonal antibody blocking of cytotoxic T lymphocyte-associated protein 4 (CTLA-4) and programmed cell death protein 1 (PD1), has boosted the development of this treatment modalities, therapeutic targets and schemes that combine various immunological agents are now being described at a breathtaking pace. In this review, we outline some of the main strategies in cancer immunotherapy (immunoprecipitation), and discuss the progress in the synergistic design of immune-targeting combination therapies.