Neurology Central

State of the art in immunotherapy of neuroblastoma

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Neuroblastoma (NB) is a common and deadly malignancy mostly observed in children. Evolution of therapeutic options for NB led to the addition of immunotherapeutic modalities to the previously recruited chemotherapeutic options. Molecular studies of the NB cells resulted in the discovery of many tumor-associated genes and antigens such as MYCN gene and GD2. MYCN gene and GD2 surface antigen are two of the most practical discoveries regarding immunotherapy of neuroblastoma. The GD2 antigen has been targeted in many animal and human studies including Phase III clinical trials.

Even though these antigens have changed the face of pediatric neuroblastoma, they do not take as much credit in immunotherapy of adult-onset neuroblastoma. Monoclonal antibodies have been designed to detect this antigen on the surface of NB tumor cells. Despite bettering the outcomes for NB patients, current therapies still fail in many cases. Studies are underway to discover more specific tumor-associated antigens and more effective treatment options. In the current narrative, immunotherapy of NB – from emerging of this therapeutic backbone in NB to the latest discoveries regarding this malignancy – has been reviewed.

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