Cancer vaccines based on dendritic cells (DCs) have been among the most vigorously studied new cancer therapies during the last decade. Although DCs, the most potent antigen-presenting cells in the body, can be loaded with tumor antigens through varying approaches, such as pulsing and gene transfer, DC-tumor fusion represents the most effective way of engaging DCs with tumor antigens. A significant amount of effort has been given to DC-tumor fusion vaccines, yet in most cases the clinical responses have been discouraging. Therefore, further improvement of this promising cancer therapy is urgently required in order to optimize its clinical efficacy. In this review, we briefly summarize the history and current status of DC-tumor fusion vaccines. Then, we focus on discussions of the technology and the clinical applications of the dendritoma vaccine, a highly purified DC-tumor cell vaccine that uniquely presents a tumors entire antigen diversity.
Keywords: Dendritic cells, cancer vaccine, immunotherapy, dendritoma, cell fusion
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