Human tumor antigens recognized by T cells have been recently identified in various cancers, including pancreatic cancer. With the identified antigens, new immunotherapies can be developed using more efficient immunologic intervention (due to sufficient amounts of antigens in a more immunogenic form), as well as more quantitative and qualitative immunomonitoring. Various immunotherapies for patients with various cancers, including pancreatic cancer, are currently under evaluation in clinical trials. These include adoptive transfer of tumor reactive T cells and LAK cells; nonmyeloablative stem cell transplantation; active immunization with the identified tumor antigens, various tumor-derived products, dendritic cells pulsed with tumor antigens, and gene-modified tumor cells. Although these efforts in the realm of pancreatic cancer are still limited, various groups in Japan continue to be actively involved in this field of research.
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