International Journal of Hematology

DOI: 10.1007/s12185-013-1497-3 Pages: 107-116

Peptide vaccines for hematological malignancies: a missed promise?

1. University of Siena, Azienda Ospedaliera Universitaria Senese, Department of Hematology

Correspondence to:
Monica Bocchia
Tel: +39-05-77586798
Fax: +39-05-77586185
Email: bocchia@unisi.it

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Abstract

Despite the crucial aid that newly developed target therapies are providing to chemotherapy and stem cell transplant, the cure for many hematological malignancies is still an unmet need. Although available therapies are able to induce an effective debulking of the tumor, most of the time, an insidious minimal residual disease survives current treatments and it is responsible for an immediate or delayed relapse. Peptide-derived antitumor vaccines have been developed with the idea that an artificially “educated” immune system may exert an active specific antitumor response able to control and ultimately eradicate underlying post-treatment residual disease. This review will summarize current knowledge of peptide vaccines for hematological malignancies, trying to analyze promises and pitfalls of a safe and intelligent tool that after many years from its first appearance has not yet established its potential role as alternative immune mediated therapeutic approach for hematopoietic tumors.

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