Experimental immunotherapy for malignant glioma: lessons from two decades of research in the GL261 model

Cancer Immunol Immunother. 2011 Feb;60(2):153-60. doi: 10.1007/s00262-010-0946-6. Epub 2010 Dec 1.


Nearly twenty years of experimental immunotherapy for malignant glioma yielded important insights in the mechanisms governing glioma immunology. Still considered promising, it is clear that immunotherapy does not on its own represent the magic bullet in glioma therapy. In this review, we summarize the major immunotherapeutic achievements in the mouse GL261 glioma model, which has emerged as the gold standard syngeneic model for experimental glioma therapy. Gene therapy, monoclonal antibody treatment, cytokine therapy, cell transfer strategies and dendritic cell therapy were hereby considered. Apart from the considerable progress made in understanding glioma immunology in this model, we also addressed its most pertinent issues and shortcomings. Despite these, the GL261 model will remain indispensable in glioma research since it is a fast, highly reproducible and easy-to-establish model system.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Brain Neoplasms / genetics
  • Brain Neoplasms / immunology
  • Brain Neoplasms / therapy*
  • Disease Models, Animal*
  • Glioma / genetics
  • Glioma / immunology
  • Glioma / therapy*
  • Immunotherapy / methods*
  • Mice
  • Neoplasms, Experimental / genetics
  • Neoplasms, Experimental / immunology
  • Neoplasms, Experimental / therapy*