International Journal of Hematological Disorders
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International Journal of Hematological Disorders. 2015, 2(2), 39-42
DOI: 10.12691/ijhd-2-2-3
Open AccessReview Article

Immunotherapy Targeting Leukemia Stem Cells

Maiko Matsushita1,

1Division of Clinical Physiology and Therapeutics, Keio University Faculty of Pharmacy, Tokyo, Japan

Pub. Date: July 22, 2015

Cite this paper:
Maiko Matsushita. Immunotherapy Targeting Leukemia Stem Cells. International Journal of Hematological Disorders. 2015; 2(2):39-42. doi: 10.12691/ijhd-2-2-3


Leukemia stem cells (LSCs) are considered to cause treatment failure and disease progression in leukemia patients. Although LSCs are rare, they are a quiescent population and so cannot be targeted by conventional therapies such as chemotherapy, targeted therapy, and radiotherapy. On the other hand, immunotherapy including hematopoietic stem cell transplantation could target LSCs regardless of cell cycle status. Identification of LSC-specific antigens is important for developing effective immunotherapies. Several antigens highly expressed in LSCs or on the surface of LSCs have been reported, and some of them have been found useful for eradication of LSCs. Cancer vaccines, adoptive T cell therapy, and antibody treatments to target these antigens are strategies expected to be used in the near future.

immunotherapy leukemia stem cells antigens

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