DNA Vaccines for Prostate Cancer

Curr Cancer Ther Rev. 2012 Nov 1;8(4):254-263. doi: 10.2174/157339412804143113.


Delivery of plasmid DNA encoding an antigen of interest has been demonstrated to be an effective means of immunization, capable of eliciting antigen-specific T cells. Plasmid DNA vaccines offer advantages over other anti-tumor vaccine approaches in terms of simplicity, manufacturing, and possibly safety. The primary disadvantage is their poor transfection efficiency and subsequent lower immunogenicity relative to other genetic vaccine approaches. However, multiple preclinical models demonstrate anti-tumor efficacy, and many efforts are underway to improve the immunogenicity and anti-tumor effect of these vaccines. Clinical trials using DNA vaccines as treatments for prostate cancer have begun, and to date have demonstrated safety and immunological effect. This review will focus on DNA vaccines as a specific means of antigen delivery, advantages and disadvantages of this type of immunization, previous experience in preclinical models and human trials specifically conducted for the treatment of prostate cancer, and future directions for the application of DNA vaccines to prostate cancer immunotherapy.

Keywords: DNA vaccines; clinical trials; prostate cancer; tumor antigens.