. 2014 Sep; 2(5):137-48.
doi: 10.1177/2051013614539478.

Therapeutic vaccines as a promising treatment modality against prostate cancer: rationale and recent advances

B Harpreet Singh 1 James L Gulley 2 
  • PMID: 25177493
  •     53 References
  •     8 citations


Cancer immunotherapy was deemed the medical breakthrough of 2013, in part because it can induce a rapid, durable, self-propagating and adaptable immune response. Specifically in prostate cancer, immunotherapy has emerged as a viable and attractive treatment strategy. To date, therapeutic cancer vaccines and immune checkpoint inhibitors are the two classes of immunotherapy that have demonstrated improvements in overall survival in patients with advanced tumors. The 2010 Food and Drug Administration approval of sipuleucel-T for asymptomatic or minimally symptomatic metastatic prostate cancer set the stage for ongoing phase III trials with the cancer vaccine PSA-TRICOM and the immune checkpoint inhibitor ipilimumab. A class effect of these approved immune-based therapies is a benefit in overall survival without short-term changes in disease progression, apparently due to modulation of tumor growth rate kinetics, in which the activated immune system exerts constant immunologic pressure that slows net tumor growth. A growing body of evidence suggests that the ideal population for clinical trials of cancer vaccines as monotherapy is patients with lower tumor volume and less aggressive disease. Combination strategies include immunotherapy with standard therapies or with other immunotherapies. Here we review emerging data on immunotherapy for patients with prostate cancer.

Keywords: antigen cascade; antigen spreading; combination therapy; immune checkpoint inhibitor; immune intensification; immunotherapy.

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