, Volume 60, Issue 8, pp 1153-1160
Date: 07 May 2011

Tumor-infiltrating lymphocytes: apparently good for melanoma patients. But why?

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Tumor-infiltrating T lymphocytes (TILs) are observed in a number of human primary or metastatic tumors. Recently, gene expression profiling experiments suggested that the presence of T cells in metastatic melanomas before vaccinating the patients with tumor antigens could be a biomarker for clinical benefit from the vaccines. In this context, we review results pertaining to TILs in human melanomas, their prognostic value, and some possible reasons why their presence could help in selecting melanoma patients for vaccination against tumor-specific antigens.

This paper is a Focussed Research Review based on a presentation given at the Tenth International Conference on Progress in Vaccination against Cancer (PIVAC 10), held in St. Catharine’s College, Cambridge, UK, 27–30 September 2010. It is part of a CII series of Focussed Research Reviews and meeting report.