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Cancer Immun. 2002 Oct 14;2:14.

Can hTERT peptide (540-548) -specific CD8 T cells recognize and kill tumor cells?

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  • 1Division of Clinical Onco-Immunology, Ludwig Institute for Cancer Research, Centre Hospitalier Universitaire Vaudois (CHUV), Lausanne, Switzerland.


This commentary reviews the data on HLA-A2-restricted CD8 T cells specific for peptide (540-548) derived from hTERT (human telomerase reverse transcriptase). Several studies have reported the successful generation of such T cells (1, 2, 3). However, tumor recognition was observed in some, but not all, studies. More data are required to elucidate whether hTERT peptide (540-548) -specific T cells can indeed recognize and destroy tumor cells. It would be highly useful if telomerase would emerge as a universal tumor antigen that can be targeted in the cancer immunotherapy of HLA-A2 positive patients.

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