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Home  |   Publications  |  Becker’s Hospital Review: Tumor microenvironment is a powerful companion diagnostic for cancer immunotherapy applications

Becker’s Hospital Review: Tumor microenvironment is a powerful companion diagnostic for cancer immunotherapy applications

Sam Santhosh, Hiranjith G.H., Michael Nemzek and Amitabha Chaudhuri

Currently approved checkpoint inhibitors are antibodies that block the function of three key proteins expressed on the surface of T cells: CTLA-4, PD-1 and PD-L1. Under normal conditions, these proteins function as brakes to prevent immune-related toxicity from arising because of persistent T cell activity. Cancer hijacks this essential function   of immune homeostasis to protect itself from immune- mediated elimination [1, 2]. By expressing high levels of PD- L1, tumor cells engage PD-1 receptors on T cells, suppressing  their anti-tumor activity and escaping T cell-mediated killing. By blocking PD-1 and PD-L1 signaling, the checkpoint inhibitors remove the brakes on T cells imposed by the tumor and enhance their anti-tumor activity

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