Trial watch: Dendritic cell (DC)-based immunotherapy for cancer

July 4, 2022
Source: Oncoimmunology. 2022 Jul 4;11(1):2096363. doi: 10.1080/2162402X.2022.2096363. eCollection 2022.

Authors: Raquel S Laureano, Jenny Sprooten, Isaure Vanmeerbeerk, Daniel M Borras, Jannes Govaerts, Stefan Naulaerts, Zwi N Berneman, Benoit Beuselinck, Kalijn F Bol, Jannie Borst, An Coosemans, Angeliki Datsi, Jitka Fučíková, Lisa Kinget, Bart Neyns, Gerty Schreibelt, Evelien Smits, Rüdiger V Sorg, Radek Spisek, Kris Thielemans, Sandra Tuyaerts, Steven De Vleeschouwer, I Jolanda M de Vries, Yanling Xiao, Abhishek D Garg

Dendritic cell (DC)-based vaccination for cancer treatment has seen considerable development over recent decades. However, this field is currently in a state of flux toward niche-applications, owing to recent paradigm-shifts in immuno-oncology mobilized by T cell-targeting immunotherapies. DC vaccines are typically generated using autologous (patient-derived) DCs exposed to tumor-associated or -specific antigens (TAAs or TSAs), in the presence of immunostimulatory molecules to induce DC maturation, followed by reinfusion into patients. Accordingly, DC vaccines can induce TAA/TSA-specific CD8+/CD4+ T cell responses. Yet, DC vaccination still shows suboptimal anti-tumor efficacy in the clinic. Extensive efforts are ongoing to improve the immunogenicity and efficacy of DC vaccines, often by employing combinatorial chemo-immunotherapy regimens. In this Trial Watch, we summarize the recent preclinical and clinical developments in this field and discuss the ongoing trends and future perspectives of DC-based immunotherapy for oncological indications.