Immune-based therapies in pancreatic and colorectal cancers and biomarkers of responsiveness

Giuseppe Di Caro, Giovanni Francesco Castino, Francesca Bergomas, Nina Cortese, Maurizio Chiriva-Internati, Fabio Grizzi, Federica Marchesi

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Immune-based strategies are the most promising treatments to improve cancer disease control. Early clinical trials are ongoing to test the safety and feasibility of immune-based therapies for gastrointestinal cancers. However, to date, immunotherapy has been only an experimental option for these diseases and a better understanding of their molecular, cellular, structural and clinical dissimilarities is crucial in the generation of tailored immunotherapeutic treatments. In this review, we will summarize the key mechanisms that regulate the action of immune system in cancer and the different immune-based approaches aimed at improving disease control in patients with advanced disease. We will then move on to discussing the current immunotherapeutic approaches in two types of gastrointestinal (colo-rectal and pancreatic) cancers, whose immune microenvironment has been lately object of intense analyses and has emerged as an important determinant of clinical outcome.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1219-1228
Number of pages10
JournalExpert Review of Anticancer Therapy
Issue number10
Publication statusPublished - Oct 1 2014


  • biomarkers
  • colo-rectal cancer
  • immunotherapy
  • pancreatic adenocarcinoma
  • tumor microenvironment

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pharmacology (medical)
  • Oncology
  • Medicine(all)


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