Natural killer cells: can they be useful as adoptive immunotherapy for cancer?

Expert Opin Biol Ther. 2005 Feb;5(2):163-72. doi: 10.1517/14712598.5.2.163.


As part of the innate immune system, natural killer (NK) cells form the first line of defence against pathogens or transformed/cancerous host cells. Recent experimental and clinical data show the possibility of exploiting NK activity as a cell-based immunotherapy to treat cancer. This review discusses the recent knowledge on NK cell biology that has impacted on its development as a treatment for cancer.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Humans
  • Immunotherapy, Adoptive / methods*
  • Killer Cells, Natural / immunology*
  • Neoplasms / immunology*
  • Neoplasms / therapy