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Journal of Oncology
Volume 2010, Article ID 179491, 11 pages
Review Article

Advances in Cellular Therapy for the Treatment of Thyroid Cancer

Endocrine Cancer Center, Department of Endocrinology, Diabetes, and Rheumatology, University Hospital Duesseldorf, Moorenstr.5, 40225 Duesseldorf, Germany

Received 2 September 2009; Accepted 6 May 2010

Academic Editor: Jennifer E. Rosen

Copyright © 2010 Claudia Papewalis et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


Up to now, there are no curative therapies available for the subset of metastasized undifferentiated/anaplastic thyroid carcinomas. This review describes the possible use of immunocompetent cells which may help to restore the antitumor immune recognition for treating an existing tumor or preventing its recurrence. The most prominent experimental strategy is the use of dendritic cells (DCs) which are highly potent in presenting tumor antigens. Activated DCs subsequently migrate to draining lymph nodes where they present antigens to naïve lymphocytes and induce cytotoxic T cells (CTL). Alternatively to DC therapy, adoptive cell transfer may be performed by either using natural killer cells or ex vivo maturated CTLs. Within this review article we will focus on recent advances in the understanding of anti-tumor immune responses, for example, in thyroid carcinomas including the advances which have been made for the identification of potential tumor antigens in thyroid malignancies.