T helper 17 T cells do good for cancer immunotherapy

Glenda Canderan, Paolo Dellabona

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


The immune system plays an important role in tumor control. Tumor antigen-specific CD4+ and CD8+ T cells are being actively exploited in cancer immunotherapy protocols that often attain clinical responses. The T helper (Th)1 effector cytokine profile, epitomized by the production of IFN-γ, is considered the optimal pathway in controlling tumor growth. In this study, Martin-Orozco challenges this notion by demonstrating that newly defined Th17 effector T cells display a stronger anti-tumor effect vis a vis with TM cells. Th17 cells produce the strongly inflammatory cytokines IL-17A and IL-17F, and so far have been implicated in the response to infectious pathogens and in autoimmunity. This study reveals that Th17 cells protect against cancer, not only by triggering a potent nonantigen-specific intratumor inflammatory infiltrate, but also, and remarkably, by providing a more significant help than TM cells for the efficient induction, expansion, differentiation and tumor homing of tumor-specific CD8+ T cells. This study, therefore, sheds new light on the effector functions of TM7 cells and has strong implications for their translation into clinical applications for cancer immunotherapy.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)21-24
Number of pages4
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - Jan 2010


  • Adoptive immunotherapy
  • Th17 cells
  • Tumor immunology
  • Vaccines

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Immunology
  • Immunology and Allergy
  • Oncology


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