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Radiotherapy as a Backbone for Novel Concepts in Cancer Immunotherapy

1
Department of Surgery, Division of General Surgery, Medical University of Vienna, Waehringer Guertel 18–20, 1090 Vienna, Austria
2
Comprehensive Cancer Center, Medical University of Vienna, 1120 Vienna, Austria
3
Department of Cancer Cell Signaling, Boehringer Ingelheim RCV GmBH & Co KG., Dr. Boehringer Gasse 5–11, 1120 Vienna, Austria
4
Ludwig Boltzmann Institute Applied Diagnostics, Medical University of Vienna, Waehringer Guertel 18–20, 1090 Vienna, Austria
*
Authors to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Cancers 2020, 12(1), 79; https://doi.org/10.3390/cancers12010079
Received: 2 December 2019 / Revised: 19 December 2019 / Accepted: 24 December 2019 / Published: 29 December 2019
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Cell Death in Cancer)
Radiation-induced immunogenic cell death has been described to contribute to the efficacy of external beam radiotherapy in local treatment of solid tumors. It is well established that radiation therapy can induce immunogenic cell death in cancer cells under certain conditions. Initial clinical studies combining radiotherapy with immunotherapies suggest a synergistic potential of this approach. Improving our understanding of how radiation reconditions the tumor immune microenvironment should pave the way for designing rational and robust combinations with immunotherapeutic drugs that enhance both local and systemic anti-cancer immune effects. In this review, we summarize irradiation-induced types of immunogenic cell death and their effects on the tumor microenvironment. We discuss preclinical insights on mechanisms and benefits of combining radiotherapy with immunotherapy, focusing on immune checkpoint inhibitors. In addition, we elaborate how these observations were translated into clinical studies and which parameters may be optimized to achieve best results in future clinical trials. View Full-Text
Keywords: radiation; irradiation; immunotherapy; immune checkpoint inhibitors; PD-1; CTLA-4; STING; TMEM173; clinical radiation; irradiation; immunotherapy; immune checkpoint inhibitors; PD-1; CTLA-4; STING; TMEM173; clinical
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MDPI and ACS Style

Kabiljo, J.; Harpain, F.; Carotta, S.; Bergmann, M. Radiotherapy as a Backbone for Novel Concepts in Cancer Immunotherapy. Cancers 2020, 12, 79.

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