Immunologic Research

, Volume 36, Issue 1–3, pp 137–146 | Cite as

Helper roles of NK and CD8+ T cells in the induction of tumor immunity

Polarized dendritic cells as cancer vaccines
  • Pawel Kalinski
  • Yutaro Nakamura
  • Payal Watchmaker
  • Adam Giermasz
  • Ravikumar Muthuswamy
  • Robbie B. Mailliard


The work in our laboratory addresses two interrelated areas of dendritic cell (DC) biology: (1) the role of DCs as mediators of feedback interactions between NK cells, CD8+ and CD4+ T cells; and (2) the possibility to use such feedback and the paradigms derived from anti-viral responses, to promote the induction of therapeutic immunity against cancer. We observed that CD8+ T cells and NK cells, the classical “effector” cells, also play “helper” roles, regulating ability of DCs to induce type-1 immune immunity, critical for fighting tumors and intracellular pathogens. Our work aims to delineate which pathways of NK and CD8+ T cell activation result in their helper activity, and to identify the molecular mechanisms allowing them to induce type-1 polarized DCs (DC1s) with selectively enhanced ability to promote type-1 responses and anti-cancer immunity. The results of these studies allowed us and our colleagues to design phase I/II clinical trials incorporating the paradigms of DC polarization and helper activity of effector cells in cancer immunotherapy.

Key Words

Dendric cells Cancer Immunotherapy Vaccines Th 1 CTL NK cells Clinical trials Melanoma Colorectal cancer Prostate cancer 


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Copyright information

© Humana Press Inc. 2006

Authors and Affiliations

  • Pawel Kalinski
    • 1
    • 2
    • 3
    • 4
  • Yutaro Nakamura
    • 1
  • Payal Watchmaker
    • 1
  • Adam Giermasz
    • 1
  • Ravikumar Muthuswamy
    • 1
  • Robbie B. Mailliard
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of SurgeryUniversity of PittsburghPittsburgh
  2. 2.Department of ImmunologyUniversity of PittsburghPittsburgh
  3. 3.Department of Infectious Diseases and MicrobiologyUniversity of Pittsburgh
  4. 4.Department of SurgeryUniversity of Pittsburgh Cancer Institute, Hillman Cancer Center, Res. PavilionPittsburgh

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