TRAIL and its receptors as targets for cancer therapy

Cancer Sci. 2004 Oct;95(10):777-83. doi: 10.1111/j.1349-7006.2004.tb02181.x.


Tumor necrosis factor (TNF)-related apoptosis-inducing ligand (TRAIL) is a member of the TNF family of cytokines, which can induce apoptotic cell death in a variety of tumor cells by engaging the death receptors DR4 and DR5, while sparing most normal cells. Preclinical studies in mice and non-human primates have shown the potential utility of recombinant soluble TRAIL and agonistic anti-DR5 or DR4 antibodies for cancer therapy. Moreover, we have recently revealed a vital role for endogenously expressed TRAIL in immunosurveillance of developing and metastatic tumors. In this review, we summarize recent knowledge about TRAIL and its receptors as promising targets for cancer therapy.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Antibodies, Monoclonal / therapeutic use
  • Antineoplastic Agents / pharmacology*
  • Apoptosis
  • Apoptosis Regulatory Proteins
  • Drug Delivery Systems*
  • Humans
  • Immunologic Surveillance
  • Membrane Glycoproteins / drug effects*
  • Mice
  • Models, Biological
  • Receptors, TNF-Related Apoptosis-Inducing Ligand
  • Receptors, Tumor Necrosis Factor / drug effects*
  • Receptors, Tumor Necrosis Factor / immunology
  • Recombinant Proteins / pharmacology
  • TNF-Related Apoptosis-Inducing Ligand
  • Tumor Necrosis Factor-alpha / drug effects*


  • Antibodies, Monoclonal
  • Antineoplastic Agents
  • Apoptosis Regulatory Proteins
  • Membrane Glycoproteins
  • Receptors, TNF-Related Apoptosis-Inducing Ligand
  • Receptors, Tumor Necrosis Factor
  • Recombinant Proteins
  • TNF-Related Apoptosis-Inducing Ligand
  • TNFRSF10A protein, human
  • TNFRSF10B protein, human
  • TNFSF10 protein, human
  • Tnfrsf10b protein, mouse
  • Tnfsf10 protein, mouse
  • Tumor Necrosis Factor-alpha