, Volume 5, Issue 2, pp 90-93
Date: 07 Jun 2012

Immunotherapy for nonsmall-cell lung cancer

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Systemic chemotherapy for nonsmall-cell lung cancer (NSCLC) has reached a plateau in effectiveness for several years and certainly biological therapy (approved antiangiogenic agents and tyrosine kinase inhibitors) has slightly improved survival; however, the mortality of NSCLC is very high and survival of metastatic disease is less than 2 years. Therefore, new approaches are required to improve current outcomes. Active-specific immunotherapy is an area of oncology that is rapidly expanding and delivering promising results such as asymptomatic prostate cancer with the use of sipuleucel-T. In the field of lung cancer, there are multiple vaccines focused on creating specific antitumor activity in NSCLC. Whole-cell vaccines like belagenpumatucel-L and antigen-specific vaccines like L-BLP25, TG4010, EGF vaccine and MAGE-A3 vaccines are undergoing phase III clinical trials after having demonstrated encouraging results in previous phase II trials with minimum toxicity. Hopefully, positive results will be revealed in the next few years, giving our lung cancer patients a new and more personalized therapy with better quality of life. The short review is indented to give an overview of the current data in the main studies of active immunotherapy for NSCLC.