Cancer Immunology, Immunotherapy

, Volume 59, Issue 11, pp 1697–1705 | Cite as

Administration of embryonic stem cells generates effective antitumor immunity in mice with minor and heavy tumor load

  • Wei Dong
  • Jiajun Du
  • Hongchang Shen
  • Dongwei Gao
  • Zhenxiang Li
  • Guanghui Wang
  • Xueru Mu
  • Qi LiuEmail author
Original Article


The history of immunizing animals with fetal tissues to generate an antitumor response dates back a century ago. Subsequent reports supported the idea that vaccination with embryonic materials could generate cancer-specific immunity and protect animals from transplantable and chemically induced tumors. In our study, we found C57 BL/6 mice vaccinated with embryonic stem cells (ESCs) received obvious antitumor immunity, which protected them from the formation and development of lung cancer. Furthermore, we investigated the antitumor effects of administration of ESCs in mice with minor and/or heavy tumor load. The tumor growth was monitored, the proliferation of lymphocytes and secretion of cytokines were examined, and finally the tissue sections were approached by immunohistochemical and apoptosis staining. The results suggested that mice injected with ESCs received obvious tumor inhibition and retardation due to significant lymphocyte proliferation and cytokine secretion, which help to rebuild the host’s immunity against cancer to some extent and comprise the main part of antitumor immunity. Moreover, mice with minor tumor load received stronger antitumor effect compared with mice with heavy tumor load, may be due to relatively intact immune system. Thus, besides their function as prophylactic vaccines, administration of ESCs could be a potential treatment for cancer, which obviously prevent and control the proliferation and development of malignant tumors.


Embryonic stem cells Cancer stem cells Antitumor immunity Immunotherapy Cancer vaccine 



This study was supported by the National High-Tech Research and Development Programme of China (Programme 863) (Grant Number 2007AA021802). We would like to thank Professor Liu of Department of Pathology for her assistance in the processing of tissue sections.

Conflict of interest



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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag 2010

Authors and Affiliations

  • Wei Dong
    • 1
  • Jiajun Du
    • 2
  • Hongchang Shen
    • 1
  • Dongwei Gao
    • 1
  • Zhenxiang Li
    • 1
  • Guanghui Wang
    • 1
  • Xueru Mu
    • 1
  • Qi Liu
    • 1
    Email author
  1. 1.Department of Oncology, Shandong Provincial HospitalShandong UniversityJinanP. R. China
  2. 2.Department of Thoracic Surgery, Shandong Provincial HospitalShandong UniversityJinanP. R. China

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