Dendritic cell-based immunotherapy induces transient clinical response in advanced rat fibrosarcoma - comparison with preventive anti-tumour vaccination.
In this study we present the models of preventive and therapeutic vaccination of sarcoma-bearing rats with dendritic cells that present tumour antigens from killed tumour cells. We present the characteristics of dendritic cell-based vaccine and its capacity to induce anti-tumour immune response both in vitro and in vivo. We show that preventive vaccination efficiently prevents tumour growth. On the other hand, vaccination of rats with established tumours did not lead to eradication of the tumours. Despite the induction of a vigorous immune response after administration of dendritic cell-based vaccine and transient decrease in tumour progression, tumours eventually resumed their growth and animals vaccinated with dendritic cells succumbed to cancer. In both settings, preventive and therapeutic, dendritic cell-based vaccination induced a vigorous tumour-specific T-cell response. These results argue for the timing of cancer immunotherapy to the stages of low tumour load. Immunotherapy initiated at the stage of minimal residual disease, after reduction of tumour load by other modalities, will have much better chance to offer a clinical benefit to cancer patients than the immunotherapy at the stage of metastatic disease.