Infusions with immune cells, such as lymphocytes or natural killer (NK) cells, represent one of several modalities of immunotherapy. In human patients with advanced B-cell leukemia or lymphoma, infusions with chimeric antigen receptor (CAR) T-lymphocytes have shown promising responses. However, the scientific and clinical development of cell-based therapies for dogs, who get cancer of similar types as humans, is lagging behind. One reason is that immune cells and their functionality in dogs are less well characterized, largely due a lack of canine-specific reagents to detect surface markers, and specific cytokines to isolate and expand their immune cells. This review summarizes the current status of canine cancer immunotherapies, with focus on autologous and allogeneic T-lymphocytes, as well as NK cells, and discusses potential initiatives that would allow therapies with canine immune cells to “catch up” with the advances in humans.
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