Immunotherapy in Cancer Treatment

  • Author: Gail Wilkes, RNC, ANP-BC, MS, AOCN® (More Info)
  • Section Editor: Marlene SanFilippo, MSN, ARNP, FNP-C, AOCNP®
  • Editors In Chief: Dawn Camp-Sorrell, MSN, FNP, AOCN®; Rebecca Hawkins, MSN, ANP, AOCN®, ACHPN
  • Last Reviewed: 6/6/17 (What's New)


  • Some monoclonal antibodies are classified as immune checkpoint inhibitors
  • Checkpoints are “pit stops” in the immune system that act to slow down the immune response to protect healthy cells and areas where tumor cells can escape immune surveillance (Figure 9)[Ileana 2013; Eggermont 2013; Finn 2013]
  • CTLA-4 and PD-1 are immune checkpoints targeted by anticancer therapy[Garrett 2011]

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