Neoantigen Cancer Vaccines: Generation, Optimization, and Therapeutic Targeting Strategies

Vaccines (Basel). 2022 Jan 26;10(2):196. doi: 10.3390/vaccines10020196.


Alternatives to conventional cancer treatments are highly sought after for high-risk malignancies that have a poor response to established treatment modalities. With research advancing rapidly in the past decade, neoantigen-based immunotherapeutic approaches represent an effective and highly tolerable therapeutic option. Neoantigens are tumor-specific antigens that are not expressed in normal cells and possess significant immunogenic potential. Several recent studies have described the conceptual framework and methodologies to generate neoantigen-based vaccines as well as the formulation of appropriate clinical trials to advance this approach for patient care. This review aims to describe some of the key studies in the recent literature in this rapidly evolving field and summarize the current advances in neoantigen identification and selection, vaccine generation and delivery, and the optimization of neoantigen-based therapeutic strategies, including the early data from pivotal clinical studies.

Keywords: adjuvant therapy; cancer immunotherapy; cancer vaccination; dendritic cell vaccine; immunogenic target; neoantigen; neoepitope; personalized vaccine.

Publication types

  • Review