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Adaptive T-cell immunity and tumor antigen recognition 

Adaptive T-cell immunity and tumor antigen recognition
Chapter:
Adaptive T-cell immunity and tumor antigen recognition
Author(s):

Pedro Romero

and Pierre G Coulie

DOI:
10.1093/med/9780199676866.003.0001
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date: 30 June 2022

Current advances in cancer immunotherapy are based on the antigenicity of human tumors, and also on their immunogenicity. Their antigenicity results from the presence at the cell surface of HLA molecules presenting antigenic peptides encoded by genes that are selectively expressed in tumors. The reasons for this selectivity are now well established. These antigens can therefore be recognized by T lymphocytes that leave normal tissues unharmed. The immunogenicity of human tumors translates into the presence, in many if not most cancer patients, of spontaneous T-lymphocyte responses against these antigens. It is, however, obvious that in patients with a detectable tumur such spontaneous responses do not reject all the tumor cells, and more and more reasons for this failure are now understood. Such knowledge is providing valuable clues to improve the clinical efficacy of immune-based therapies for cancer.

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