DNA vaccines: successes and limitations in cancer and infectious disease

J Cell Biochem. 2006 May 15;98(2):235-42. doi: 10.1002/jcb.20775.


Vaccination with plasmid DNA is an active area of investigation that is being applied to diseases including cancer and microbial pathogens associated with infectious diseases. Since its discovery, great progress has been made with the administration of DNA vaccines to initiate specific and effective immune responses against targeted illnesses. However, many obstacles still face its use in prophylactic and therapeutic vaccination scenarios. The nature of these difficulties alongside the successes and future of plasmid DNA will be discussed.

Publication types

  • Historical Article
  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Antigens, Neoplasm / immunology
  • Antigens, Neoplasm / therapeutic use
  • Cancer Vaccines / therapeutic use
  • Communicable Disease Control / methods*
  • Disease Models, Animal
  • History, 20th Century
  • Humans
  • Immunization
  • Immunotherapy, Active / methods
  • Neoplasms / immunology
  • Neoplasms / prevention & control*
  • Plasmids / genetics
  • Plasmids / immunology
  • Vaccination / history
  • Vaccination / methods
  • Vaccines, DNA / immunology
  • Vaccines, DNA / therapeutic use*


  • Antigens, Neoplasm
  • Cancer Vaccines
  • Vaccines, DNA