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Nat Rev Immunol. 2008 Jan;8(1):59-73.

Immunological aspects of cancer chemotherapy.

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INSERM, U805, Institut Gustave Roussy, 39 Rue Camille Desmoulins, F-94805 Villejuif, Paris, France.


Accumulating evidence indicates that the innate and adaptive immune systems make a crucial contribution to the antitumour effects of conventional chemotherapy-based and radiotherapy-based cancer treatments. Moreover, the molecular and cellular bases of the immunogenicity of cell death that is induced by cytotoxic agents are being progressively unravelled, challenging the guidelines that currently govern the development of anticancer drugs. Here, we review the immunological aspects of conventional cancer treatments and propose that future successes in the fight against cancer will rely on the development and clinical application of combined chemo- and immunotherapies.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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