Immunotherapy: A useful strategy to help combat multidrug resistance

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37 Scopus citations


Multidrug resistance (MDR) renders cancer cells relatively invulnerable to treatment with many standard cytotoxic anti-cancer agents. Cancer immunotherapy could be an important adjunct for other strategies to treat MDR positive cancers, as resistance to immunotherapy generally is unrelated to mechanisms of resistance to cytotoxic agents. Immunotherapy to combat MDR positive tumors could use any of the following strategies: direct immune attack against MDR positive cells, using MDR as an immune target to deliver cytotoxic agents, capitalization on other immune properties of MDR positive cells, or conditional immunotoxins expressed under MDR control. Additional insights into the immunogenic potential of some cytotoxic agents can also be brought to bear on these strategies. This review will highlight key concepts in cancer immunotherapy and illustrate immune principles and strategies that have been or could be used to help destroy MDR positive tumor cells, either alone or in rational combinations.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)106-113
Number of pages8
JournalDrug Resistance Updates
Issue number1-2
StatePublished - 2012


  • Combination therapy
  • Cytokines
  • Immune dysfunction
  • Immunotherapy
  • Multidrug resistance

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Oncology
  • Pharmacology
  • Cancer Research
  • Infectious Diseases
  • Pharmacology (medical)


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