Mechanisms of immunotherapy resistance: lessons from glioblastoma

Christopher M. Jackson, John Choi, Michael Lim

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

79 Scopus citations


Glioblastoma (GBM) is the deadliest form of brain cancer, with a median survival of less than 2 years despite surgical resection, radiation, and chemotherapy. GBM’s rapid progression, resistance to therapy, and inexorable recurrence have been attributed to several factors, including its rapid growth rate, its molecular heterogeneity, its propensity to infiltrate vital brain structures, the regenerative capacity of treatment-resistant cancer stem cells, and challenges in achieving high concentrations of chemotherapeutic agents in the central nervous system. Escape from immunosurveillance is increasingly recognized as a landmark event in cancer biology. Translation of this framework to clinical oncology has positioned immunotherapy as a pillar of cancer treatment. Amid the bourgeoning successes of cancer immunotherapy, GBM has emerged as a model of resistance to immunotherapy. Here we review the mechanisms of immunotherapy resistance in GBM and discuss how insights into GBM–immune system interactions might inform the next generation of immunotherapeutics for GBM and other resistant pathologies.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1100-1109
Number of pages10
JournalNature Immunology
Issue number9
StatePublished - Sep 1 2019

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Immunology and Allergy
  • Immunology


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