Adoptive t-cell therapy for Epstein-Barr virus-positive Hodgkin's disease

M. Helen Huls, Cliona M. Rooney, Helen E. Heslop

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

7 Scopus citations


Immunotherapy approaches with antigen-specific cytotoxic T lymphocytes (CTLs) have proved safe and effective prophylaxis and treatment of Epstein-Barr virus (EBV)-associated lymphomas arising after bone marrow transplantation. EBV is also associated with other malignancies including about 40% of cases of Hodgkin's disease making this tumor another potential target for EBV-targeted immunotherapy. While studies with autologous EBV-specific CTLs have shown antiviral activity and immune effects, the clinical responses have been less impressive than those observed in post-transplant lymphomas. There are several possible reasons why the malignant cells in EBV-positive Hodgkin's disease may be less susceptible to immunotherapy approaches, including the fact that they express a more restricted array of EBV-encoded antigens and possess many immune evasion strategies. A number of approaches to overcome these tumor evasion strategies including targeting CTLs to the expressed antigens and genetic modification of CTLs are being evaluated.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)149-153
Number of pages5
JournalActa Haematologica
Issue number2-3
StatePublished - 2003


  • Adoptive immunotherapy
  • Cytotoxic T lymphocyte
  • Epstein-Barr virus
  • Hodgkin's disease

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Hematology


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