Prostate cancer immunology - An update for urologists Academic Article uri icon


  • A better understanding of the immune processes in the pathogenesis and progression of prostate cancer (CaP) may point the way towards improved treatment modalities. The challenge is to amplify immune responses to combat tumour escape mechanisms. Infection and inflammation may have a role in prostate carcinogenesis, including the newly discovered xenotropic murine leukaemia virus (XMRV). These inflammatory states damage defence mechanisms and induce a high proliferative state favouring further mutation and impaired immune surveillance. With this knowledge we are able to explore the use of immunotherapy to rejuvenate the immune system in combating CaP. Recently Sipuleucel-T, an immunotherapeutic agent for metastatic androgen independent CaP, has resulted in improved survival and might be the first immunotherapeutic agent to obtain approval for CaP treatment. This short review will focus on the growing body of evidence suggesting an immunity-based link between CaP and inflammation and infection.

publication date

  • 2011