The Era of Immune Checkpoint Therapy: From Cancer to Viral Infection—A Mini Comment on the 2018 Medicine Nobel Prize
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The 2018 Medicine Nobel Prize was awarded jointly to two immunologists, James P. Allison at the University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center in Houston and Tasuku Honjo at Kyoto University in Japan, who pioneered a new way to treat cancers (Ledford et al.2018). Both Laureates have shown how so called “immune checkpoints” on T cells can be used to manipulate the immune responses so that T cells can efficiently attack cancer cells. Using the immune system to fight cancers has been investigated for more than a 100 years. Recent advances in cancer immunotherapy, particularly immune checkpoint blockade therapy have dramatically changed the therapeutic strategy against advanced cancers. Through inhibiting negative immune regulation, these approaches have demonstrated improved overall survival for patients with advanced cancers. Importantly, for some of the patients treated with such strategies, their tumors seem to totally disappear.
Immune Checkpoint Therapy in Cancer
Most of the current...
This work is supported by the National Natural Science Foundation of China (91742114 and 91642118), the National Scientific and Technological Major Project of China (2017ZX10202203), the Integrated Innovative Team for Major Human Diseases Program of Tongji Medical College, Huazhong University of Science and Technology and the Sino-German Virtual Institute for Viral Immunology.
Compliance with Ethical Standards
Conflict of interest
The authors declare that they have no conflict of interest.
Animal and Human Rights Statement
This article does not contain any studies with human or animal subjects performed by any of the authors.
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