Immunotherapy and Prevention of Pancreatic Cancer

Trends Cancer. 2018 Jun;4(6):418-428. doi: 10.1016/j.trecan.2018.04.001. Epub 2018 Apr 30.


Pancreatic cancer is the third-leading cause of cancer mortality in the USA, recently surpassing breast cancer. A key component of pancreatic cancer's lethality is its acquired immune privilege, which is driven by an immunosuppressive microenvironment, poor T cell infiltration, and a low mutational burden. Although immunotherapies such as checkpoint blockade or engineered T cells have yet to demonstrate efficacy, a growing body of evidence suggests that orthogonal combinations of these and other strategies could unlock immunotherapy in pancreatic cancer. In this Review article, we discuss promising immunotherapies currently under investigation in pancreatic cancer and provide a roadmap for the development of prevention vaccines for this and other cancers.

Keywords: immunotherapy; pancreatic cancer; prevention vaccines.

Publication types

  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Cancer Vaccines / administration & dosage*
  • Humans
  • Immunotherapy*
  • Pancreatic Neoplasms / immunology
  • Pancreatic Neoplasms / therapy*


  • Cancer Vaccines