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Hum Cell. 2003 Dec;16(4):175-82.

Dendritic cell-based combined immunotherapy with autologous tumor-pulsed dendritic cell vaccine and activated T cells for cancer patients: rationale, current progress, and perspectives.

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Department of Cancer Therapy and Research, Station for Collaborative Research, Graduate School of Medical Sciences, Kyushu University, 3-1-1 Maidashi, Higashi-ku, Fukuoka 812-8582, Japan.


Effective adoptive cancer immunotherapy depends on an ability to generate tumor-antigen-presenting cells and tumor-reactive effector lymphocytes and to deliver these effector cells to the tumor. Dendritic cells (DCs) are the most potent antigen-presenting cells, capable of sensitizing T cells to new and recall antigens. Many studies have shown that tumors express unique proteins that can be loaded on DCs to trigger an immune response. The current experimental and clinical statuses of adoptive transfer of tumor antigen-pulsed DCs and vaccine-primed activated T cells are summarized herein. Clinical trials of antigen-pulsed DCs have been conducted in patients with various types of cancer, including non-Hodgkin lymphoma, multiple myeloma, prostate cancer, renal cell carcinoma, malignant melanoma, colorectal cancer, and non-small cell lung cancer. These studies have shown that antigen-loaded DC vaccination is safe and promising for the treatment of cancer. In addition, tumor vaccine-primed T cells have been shown to induce antitumor activity in vivo. Several clinical studies are being conducted on the use of vaccine-primed T cells such as tumor-drainage lymph node. It is reasonable to consider using both tumor antigen-pulsed DCs and vaccine-primed lymphocytes as adjuvants. We are now investigating the use of autologous whole tumor antigen-pulsed DCs and the DC vaccine-primed activated lymphocytes in patients with multiple metastasis of solid tumors.

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