Nature Reviews Immunology
March 2018 Vol 18 No 3
Focus on: Cancer immunotherapy
Towards personalized, tumour-specific, therapeutic vaccines for cancer
Zhuting Hu, Patrick A. Ott & Catherine J. Wu
p168 | doi:10.1038/nri.2017.131
Cancer vaccines, which are designed to amplify tumour-specific T cell responses through active immunization, have long been envisioned as a key tool of effective cancer immunotherapy. Despite a clear rationale for such vaccines, extensive past efforts were unsuccessful in mediating clinically relevant antitumour activity in humans. Recently, however, next-generation sequencing and novel bioinformatics tools have enabled the systematic discovery of tumour neoantigens, which are highly desirable immunogens because they arise from somatic mutations of the tumour and are therefore tumour specific. As a result of the diversity of tumour neoepitopes between individuals, the development of personalized cancer vaccines is warranted. Here, we review the emerging field of personalized cancer vaccination and discuss recent developments and future directions for this promising treatment strategy.