Leukemia-associated antigens and their relevance to the immunotherapy of acute myeloid leukemia
Faculty of Medicine and Health Sciences
Leukemia. - Baltimore, Md, 1987, currens
, p. 2186-2196
University of Antwerp
The graft-versus-leukemia effect of allogeneic hematopoietic stem cell transplantation (HSCT) has shown that the immune system is capable of eradicating acute myeloid leukemia (AML). This knowledge, along with the identification of the target antigens against which antileukemia immune responses are directed, has provided a strong impetus for the development of antigen-targeted immunotherapy of AML. The success of any antigen-specific immunotherapeutic strategy depends critically on the choice of target antigen. Ideal molecules for immune targeting in AML are those that are: (1) leukemia-specific; (2) expressed in most leukemic blasts including leukemic stem cells; (3) important for the leukemic phenotype; (4) immunogenic; and (5) clinically effective. In this review, we provide a comprehensive overview on AML-related tumor antigens and assess their applicability for immunotherapy against the five criteria outlined above. In this way, we aim to facilitate the selection of appropriate target antigens, a task that has become increasingly challenging given the large number of antigens identified and the rapid pace at which new targets are being discovered. The information provided in this review is intended to guide the rational design of future antigen-specific immunotherapy trials, which will hopefully lead to new antileukemia therapies with more selectivity and higher efficacy.