Williams Cancer Institute

Immunotherapy for Cancer

Immunotherapy for Cancer

Immunotherapy for Cancer


Immune response in cancer treatments has been studied for over decades and to this day continues to be closely researched in an attempt to provide a less invasive treatment for patients. Thanks to medical research, patients and physicians have access to seventeen immunotherapy FDA approved treatments. This ongoing mission is one of great value and in today’s blog we will be exploring more interesting details about the immune system and cancer. 

The immune system includes immune cells known as antigen presenting cells, such as a dendritic cell. It gathers information and distributes it to the immune system. Now, just as it will deliver good information, it can also deliver the bad information. When this happens, it alters the T effector cells. With this, the dendritic cells are more likely to slow the immune system down rather than help it. Due to this, there is an urgency for a more precise form of treatment. 

Cryoablation 

This fascinating medical advancement is used to destroy the malignant cell while also gathering important information. Having access to good information will allow this form of therapy to then destroy the cancer that’s affecting the body. 

You may be wondering “what exactly is cryoablation?” 

Well, it’s a form of immunotherapy that involves freezing a tumor directly with a thin needle. It works best when used for early stage cancer and is useful with immune-enhancing measures to reduce the risk of future metastasis. Cryoablation is so powerful that it can be used to generate strong immune responses which can lead to one of the most successful cancer treatments that exist, especially for patients with Stage III or IV cancer. Another important note is that combining cryoablation with other forms of immunotherapy enhances the overall success rate of the cancer treatment.   

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Reference: Robert O. Dillman, Gary B. Fogel, Andrew N. Cornforth, Senthamil R. Selvan, Patric M. Schiltz, and Carol DePriest: Features associated with survival in metastatic melanoma patients treated with patient-specific dendritic cell vaccines. Cancer biother radiopharm 26:407-15 (2011)

DOI: 10.1089/cbr.2011.0973

The material contained on this site is for informational purposes only and DOES NOT CONSTITUTE THE PROVIDING OF MEDICAL ADVICE, and is not intended to be a substitute for independent professional medical judgment, advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified healthcare providers with any questions or concerns you may have regarding your health.

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