Tumor-specific cytotoxic T cells have the capacity to target and eradicate malignantB cells in patients with Hodgkin and non-Hodgkin lymphoma; however, multiple mechanisms, including regulatoryTcells, immunosuppressive ligands, andimmuneexhaustion, suppress an effective antitumor immune response.Onemechanism that is used by malignant cells to inhibit the immune response is overexpression of programmed death ligand 1 or 2 (PD-L1 or PD-L2) on the cancer cell surface. These ligands interact with the programmed death-1 (PD-1) receptor expressed on intratumoral T cells and provide an inhibitory signal, thereby suppressing the antitumor immune response. Monoclonal antibodies that block PD-1 signaling prevent T-cell inhibition and promote a T-cell-mediated antilymphoma response. Blocking antibodies that are directed against PD-1 or PD-L1 are currently being tested in patients with lymphoma and have shown remarkable efficacy, particularly in patients with relapsed Hodgkin lymphoma. On the basis of the promising activity of this approach, PD-1 inhibitors are being used as single-agent therapy in patients with relapsed Hodgkin lymphoma, and these inhibitors are also being tested in combination with standard chemotherapy or targeted agents in ongoing clinical trials.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Health Policy