This chapter will review the current status and future perspectives in the field of cancer vaccine development, and also introduce the glypican-3 (GPC3) peptide-based vaccine for hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC).
Cancer vaccine is administered to promote the induction of immune cells that respond to such antigens. Tumor-associated antigens (TAAs) are the principal targets of cancer vaccine therapy, which include peptide or protein vaccines, dendritic cell (DC) vaccines, tumor lysate vaccines, and genetic vaccines. TAA-specific immunotherapy is considered as an advantageous treatment, because it is likely that adverse effects could be reduced due to the high specificity. Several phase II/III clinical trials of vaccinebased immunotherapy to augment antitumor immunity in a number of cancer patients have been conducted and it is shown that immunotherapy could decrease the possibility of recurrence after therapeutic treatment in adjuvant settings. In 2010, for the first time, the US FDA approved a curative cancer vaccine, Provenge (sipuleucel-T), which is used for prostate cancer patients. However, vaccines as sole therapy do not substantially impact on patients with advanced solid tumors.
Therefore, a thorough understanding of tumor immunity would facilitate an improved application of potential vaccine-based therapy. The future perspectives of cancer vaccine application will likely focus on the combinatorial therapies, such as with vaccines and other immunomodulators.
Recently, we showed that a GPC3-derived peptide vaccination is considerably tolerated, and anti-tumor immunity are significant in a phase I trial in HCC patients. Based on these observations, we anticipate that the outcome of the current work will provide insights into a greater randomized clinical trial of the GPC3 peptide-based vaccine.
Keywords: Adjuvant, antigen-presenting cell (APC), cancer vaccine, cancer/testis (CT) antigen, clinical trial, cytotoxic T-cell (CTL), dendritic cell (DC) vaccine, differentiation antigen, genetic vaccine, glypican-3 (GPC3), immune checkpoint, intratumoral peptide injection, ipilimumab, major histocompatibility complex (MHC), peptide vaccine, regulatory T cell (Treg), sipuleucel-T, tumor lysate, tumor-associated antigen (TAA), virus vaccine.