Chapter 5

Cancer Immunotherapy: The Share of Cytokines and Chemokines

Amedeo Amedei and Domenico Prisco


The response of the body to cancer is not a unique mechanism and has many parallels with inflammation and wound healing. Unresolved inflammation generates a microenvironment favorable for cellular transformation and the growth of cancer cells. Chronic tissue damage triggers a repair response that includes the production of growth factors, cytokines and chemokines. In particular, cytokines and chemokines have a crucial role in cancer-related inflammation with consequent direct and indirect effects on the proliferative and invasive properties of tumor cells. In view of the multifactorial functions of cytokines and chemokines in tumorigenesis, the elucidation of their roles will further advance our understanding of the pathological processes of cancer development and highlights potential innovative anti-cancer strategies. </p><p> Despite recent advances, the main anti-cancer therapies, namely surgery, radiation therapy and chemotherapy, are limited in their ability to treat minimal and metastatic residual disease. Furthermore, the benefit of conventional therapies is often limited by collateral damage to normal tissues. Immunotherapy is a new opportunity of cancer treatment being investigated by researchers and clinicians for different cancer types. </p><p> The aim of this chapter is to analyze the recent patents and scientific reviews on the major cytokine/chemokine pathways involved in cancer immunotherapy and discuss their basic biology, clinical relevance and potential directions for future anti-cancer therapeutic applications.

Total Pages: 315-382 (68)

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