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J Clin Invest. 2007 May;117(5):1204-12.

Principles of adoptive T cell cancer therapy.

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Abramson Family Cancer Research Institute and Department of Pathology and Laboratory Medicine, University of Pennsylvania, 421 Curie Boulevard, Philadelphia, PA 19104, USA.


The transfusion of T cells, also called adoptive T cell therapy, is an effective treatment for viral infections and has induced regression of cancer in early-stage clinical trials. However, recent advances in cellular immunology and tumor biology are guiding new approaches to adoptive T cell therapy. For example, use of engineered T cells is being tested as a strategy to improve the functions of effector and memory T cells, and manipulation of the host to overcome immunotoxic effects in the tumor microenvironment has led to promising results in early-stage clinical trials. Challenges that face the field and must be addressed before adoptive T cell therapy can be translated into routine clinical practice are discussed.

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