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European Patent in Immunoncology: From Immunological Principles of Implantation to Cancer Treatment

1
STRATIFYER Molecular Pathology GmbH, D-50935 Cologne, Werthmannstrasse 1c, 50935 Cologne, Germany
2
INTELLEXON GmbH, Keltenstrasse 27, 82343 Pöcking, Germany
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2019, 20(8), 1830; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijms20081830
Received: 31 January 2019 / Revised: 9 April 2019 / Accepted: 9 April 2019 / Published: 12 April 2019
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Reproductive Immunology: Cellular and Molecular Biology)
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Abstract

The granted European patent EP 2 561 890 describes a procedure for an immunological treatment of cancer. It is based on the principles of the HLA-supported communication of implantation and pregnancy. These principles ensure that the embryo is not rejected by the mother. In pregnancy, the placenta, more specifically the trophoblast, creates an “interface” between the embryo/fetus and the maternal immune system. Trophoblasts do not express the “original” HLA identification of the embryo/fetus (HLA-A to -DQ), but instead show the non-classical HLA groups E, F, and G. During interaction with specific receptors of NK cells (e.g., killer-immunoglobulin-like receptors (KIR)) and lymphocytes (lymphocyte-immunoglobulin-like receptors (LIL-R)), the non-classical HLA groups inhibit these immunocompetent cells outside pregnancy. However, tumors are known to be able to express these non-classical HLA groups and thus make use of an immuno-communication as in pregnancies. If this occurs, the prognosis usually worsens. This patent describes, in a first step, the profiling of the non-classical HLA groups in primary tumor tissue as well as metastases and recurrent tumors. The second step comprises tailored antibody therapies, which is the subject of this patent. In this review, we analyze the underlying mechanisms and describe the currently known differences between HLA-supported communication of implantation and that of tumors. View Full-Text
Keywords: cancer; granted European patent; HLA profiling; HLA-E; HLA-F; HLA-G; immune evasion; individualized antibody therapy cancer; granted European patent; HLA profiling; HLA-E; HLA-F; HLA-G; immune evasion; individualized antibody therapy
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Würfel, F.M.; Winterhalter, C.; Trenkwalder, P.; Wirtz, R.M.; Würfel, W. European Patent in Immunoncology: From Immunological Principles of Implantation to Cancer Treatment. Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2019, 20, 1830.

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