Tumor antigen presentation: changing the rules

Cancer Immunol Immunother. 1998 Apr;46(2):70-4. doi: 10.1007/s002620050463.


Cell-based tumor vaccines have been developed on the basis of the hypothesis that tumor cells can be genetically modified to present antigen to T lymphocytes directly. Contrary to expectations, cross-priming is the predominant pathway for activation of tumor-specific CD8+ T cells, while direct presentation of antigen dominates activation of tumor-specific CD4+ T cells. These results pose interesting paradoxes for the generation of immune responses, and have definite implications for the development of anti-cancer vaccines.

Publication types

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

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Antigen Presentation / immunology*
  • Antigens, Neoplasm / immunology
  • CD4-Positive T-Lymphocytes / immunology
  • CD8-Positive T-Lymphocytes / immunology
  • Cancer Vaccines / immunology*
  • Dendritic Cells / immunology
  • Histocompatibility Antigens Class II / immunology
  • Humans
  • Neoplasms / immunology*
  • Transfection


  • Antigens, Neoplasm
  • Cancer Vaccines
  • Histocompatibility Antigens Class II