Author | Charles G. Drake, MD, PhD

Articles

Personalized Immune Therapy: A Slippery Fish?

April 15, 2016

Advances in basic science and clinical medicine in the past few decades have increasingly elevated the profile of personalized medicine, ie, the identification of individual tumor or biologic features that offer targets for therapy.

Stereotactic Radiation Therapy Combined With Immunotherapy: Augmenting the Role of Radiation in Local and Systemic Treatment

May 15, 2015

In this review we detail the rationale supporting a combination of immunotherapy and stereotactic radiation. Additionally, we discuss the evidence for the immune stimulatory effects of focused radiation and the role that radiation may play in enhancing the systemic treatment effects of immunotherapy.

Visceral Metastases and Prostate Cancer Treatment: ‘Die Hard,’ ‘Tough Neighborhoods,’ or ‘Evil Humors’?

November 15, 2014

Although the mechanism(s) underlying the relatively poor prognosis of prostate cancer patients with visceral disease have yet to be fully elucidated, these new findings suggest that the microenvironment of bone lesions may be immunologically distinct from those at other sites.

The Future of Immunotherapy in Prostate Cancer

March 01, 2007

There has been a resurgence of interest in developing noncytotoxic immune therapies for patients with either hormone-naive biochemically relapsed post-primary therapy or castrate metastatic prostate cancer. The rationale for developing an immunotherapeutic approach has been based on the overexpression and underglycosylation of a wide variety of altered "self" molecules including prostate-specific antigen (PSA), acid phosphatase (ACP), prostate stem cell antigen (PSCA), and prostate-specific membrane antigen (PSMA), which can serve as targets for immune recognition and attack. In addition, such a strategy could theoretically make use of the patient's immune system to fight the tumor particularly if their disease is of reasonably low volume. A variety of immunotherapeutic approaches have been explored through phase I, II, and now phase III trials demonstrating that immunologic tolerance could be broken, as evidenced by the development of high-titer antibodies and T-cell responses specific for the tumor. What appears to be revolutionizing the immunotherapy field is the combination of vaccines with cytokines or immune modulators, which not only potentiate immune reactivity in vivo but foster dramatic antitumor responses. This review explores the challenges now faced in establishing a role for immune therapies for prostate cancer treatment.