13 January 2015
interleukins, cancer immunotherapy, immunoediting, immunosurveilance, microRNA, cancer stem cells, tumor microenvironment (TME), inflammation, DNA methylation, epithelial-mesenchymal transition (EMT), autophagy
Over the past years, advances in cancer immunotherapy have resulted in innovative and novel approaches in molecular cancer diagnostics and cancer therapeutic procedures. However, due to tumor heterogeneity and inter-tumoral discrepancy in tumor immunity, the clinical benefits are quite restricted. The goal of this review is to evaluate the major cytokines-interleukins involved in cancer immunotherapy and project their basic biochemical and clinical applications. Emphasis will be given to new cytokines in pre-clinical development, and potential directions for future investigation using cytokines. Furthermore, current interleukin-based approaches and clinical trial data from combination cancer immunotherapies will also be discussed. It appears that continuously increasing comprehension of cytokine-induced effects, cancer stemness, immunoediting, immune-surveillance as well as understanding of molecular interactions emerging in the tumor microenvironment and involving microRNAs, autophagy, epithelial-mesenchymal transition (EMT), inflammation, and DNA methylation processes may hold much promise in improving anti-tumor immunity. To this end, the emerging in-depth knowledge supports further studies on optimal synergistic combinations and additional adjuvant therapies to realize the full potential of cytokines as immunotherapeutic agents.