Immunobiology and Immunotherapeutic Targeting of Glioma Stem Cells

  • Mecca Madany
  • Tom M. Thomas
  • Lincoln Edwards
  • John S. YuEmail author
Part of the Advances in Experimental Medicine and Biology book series (AEMB, volume 853)


For decades human brain tumors have confounded our efforts to effectively manage and treat patients. In adults, glioblastoma multiforme is the most common malignant brain tumor with a patient survival of just over 14 months. In children, brain tumors are the leading cause of solid tumor cancer death and gliomas account for one-fifth of all childhood cancers. Despite advances in conventional treatments such as surgical resection, radiotherapy, and systemic chemotherapy, the incidence and mortality rates for gliomas have essentially stayed the same. Furthermore, research efforts into novel therapeutics that initially appeared promising have yet to show a marked benefit. A shocking and somewhat disturbing view is that investigators and clinicians may have been targeting the wrong cells, resulting in the appearance of the removal or eradication of patient gliomas only to have brain cancer recurrence. Here we review research progress in immunotherapy as it pertains to glioma treatment and how it can and is being adapted to target glioma stem cells (GSCs) as a means of dealing with this potential paradigm.


Glioma stem cells Glioblastoma Cancer stem cells Immunotherapy Cancer immunology 


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Copyright information

© Springer International Publishing Switzerland 2015

Authors and Affiliations

  • Mecca Madany
    • 1
    • 2
  • Tom M. Thomas
    • 1
    • 2
  • Lincoln Edwards
    • 1
  • John S. Yu
    • 1
    Email author
  1. 1.Maxine Dunitz Neurosurgical InstituteCedars-Sinai Medical CenterLos AngelesUSA
  2. 2.Graduate Program in Biological Science & Translational MedicineCedars-Sinai Medical CenterLos AngelesUSA

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