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Harnessing TRAIL-induced cell death for cancer therapy: a long walk with thrilling discoveries

Montinaro, Antonella; Walczak, Henning; (2022) Harnessing TRAIL-induced cell death for cancer therapy: a long walk with thrilling discoveries. Cell Death & Differentiation 10.1038/s41418-022-01059-z. (In press). Green open access

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Abstract

Tumor necrosis factor (TNF)-related apoptosis inducing ligand (TRAIL) can induce apoptosis in a wide variety of cancer cells, both in vitro and in vivo, importantly without killing any essential normal cells. These findings formed the basis for the development of TRAIL-receptor agonists (TRAs) for cancer therapy. However, clinical trials conducted with different types of TRAs have, thus far, afforded only limited therapeutic benefit, as either the respectively chosen agonist showed insufficient anticancer activity or signs of toxicity, or the right TRAIL-comprising combination therapy was not employed. Therefore, in this review we will discuss molecular determinants of TRAIL resistance, the most promising TRAIL-sensitizing agents discovered to date and, importantly, whether any of these could also prove therapeutically efficacious upon cancer relapse following conventional first-line therapies. We will also discuss the more recent progress made with regards to the clinical development of highly active non-immunogenic next generation TRAs. Based thereupon, we next propose how TRAIL resistance might be successfully overcome, leading to the possible future development of highly potent, cancer-selective combination therapies that are based on our current understanding of biology TRAIL-induced cell death. It is possible that such therapies may offer the opportunity to tackle one of the major current obstacles to effective cancer therapy, namely overcoming chemo- and/or targeted-therapy resistance. Even if this were achievable only for certain types of therapy resistance and only for particular types of cancer, this would be a significant and meaningful achievement.

Type: Article
Title: Harnessing TRAIL-induced cell death for cancer therapy: a long walk with thrilling discoveries
Location: England
Open access status: An open access version is available from UCL Discovery
DOI: 10.1038/s41418-022-01059-z
Publisher version: https://doi.org/10.1038/s41418-022-01059-z
Language: English
Additional information: This article is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License, which permits use, sharing, adaptation, distribution and reproduction in any medium or format, as long as you give appropriate credit to the original author(s) and the source, provide a link to the Creative Commons licence, and indicate if changes were made. The images or other third party material in this article are included in the article’s Creative Commons licence, unless indicated otherwise in a credit line to the material. If material is not included in the article’s Creative Commons licence and your intended use is not permitted by statutory regulation or exceeds the permitted use, you will need to obtain permission directly from the copyright holder. To view a copy of this licence, visit http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/.
Keywords: Cancer, Cell biology
UCL classification: UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Medical Sciences
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Medical Sciences > Cancer Institute > Research Department of Cancer Bio
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences
UCL
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Medical Sciences > Cancer Institute
URI: https://discovery.ucl.ac.uk/id/eprint/10157715
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