Health and Fitness

The Role of Immunotherapy in Brain Tumour Treatment

The power to fight and treat cancer lies within our immune system. The immune system is made of numerous organs, tissues, and cells. It acts as a primary shield and defends your body from foreign substances like viruses and bacteria.

Our immune system identifies cancer cells as invaders, and, if it is strong enough, attacks them. To use our immune system as a weapon against cancer, medical science has come up with a unique and effective method of treatment – immunotherapy.

Although immunotherapy has shown less success in brain tumour treatment, research and studies are on to uncover its possibilities. This treatment method involves using medications to subdue or boost your immune power to help your body combat cancer.

Let us understand the role of immunotherapy in brain tumour treatment.

Understanding Immunotherapy For Brain Tumour Treatment

Immunotherapy helps destroy and eradicate cancerous cells from the body by stimulating and boosting your immune system. Your immune system consists of a key component known as T – cells. These immune cells are powerful enough to combat brain tumours.

These cells recognise and eliminate foreign substances or ‘non-self’ like bacteria and viruses and protect you from cancer and infections. These T cells can identify tumour cells. These tumour cells produce mutated proteins, which T cells consider ‘foreign’ or ‘alien.’

Immunotherapy focuses on triggering and activating the anti-tumour T-cell response. This treatment method can potentially eliminate brain tumors from your body. Moreover, it can prevent the possibility of relapse.

Types of Immunotherapy For Brain Tumour Treatment

While some types of immunotherapy focus on the immune system generically, others target specific immune cells. As of now, the immunotherapies for brain tumour treatment are divided into six categories.

These include:

Checkpoint Inhibitors

Proteins are present in the normal cells of your body. These proteins indicate the immune system to avoid attacking them. However, tumour cells can produce these proteins too.

It is where checkpoint inhibitors come to aid. These drugs create blockage in the tumour cells’ checkpoint proteins. Furthermore, these drugs stimulate the immune system to attack the tumour cells.

Monoclonal Antibodies

Monoclonal antibodies are the replica of antibodies created in laboratories to help you fight infection and diseases. At times, these lab-made versions of your antibodies are used in checkpoint inhibitors.


Vaccines release a small or insignificant portion of the disease into your body. It is done to let your immune system comprehend the disease better to fight it later. It is mostly performed for viruses such as chickenpox or flu.

Scientists now use this same approach to produce vaccines that may prevent or treat cancer. Although vaccines aren’t effective in treating brain tumours, clinical trials, and research are on.

Oncolytic Viruses

Viruses can attack cancerous cells. Thus, medical researchers have come up with a solution for oncolytic viruses.

They have altered naturally developing viruses to make them powerful enough to attack tumour cells rather than healthy ones.

ACT or Adoptive T-cell Therapy

T-cells are specific cells present in your immune system. These cells can identify and combat any substance in the body that they recognize as ‘non-self’ or ‘foreign.’

This therapy produces an additional amount of T-cells in your body to make it capable of fighting conditions like cancer and infections.

Adjuvant Immunotherapies

These components either boost the positive impact of other immunotherapy procedures or boost the natural immune system in your body.

Immunotherapy For Brain Tumour Treatment: Where To Get More Insights?

You can consult your doctor to learn more about immunotherapy and opt for a clinical trial. If you’re unsure whether immunotherapy is ideal for you or not, consider asking these questions to your doctor:

  • What are the possible things you can inform me about immunotherapy?
  • Is it possible for me to undergo immunotherapy?
  • If not, what is the alternative brain tumour treatment option?
  • What will I experience during the immunotherapy procedure?
  • Does immunotherapy have any side effects?
  • Is there any clinical trial available for my brain tumour condition?
  • What is the average cost of immunotherapy for brain tumour treatment?

Final Words

Research is still ongoing on immunotherapy for brain tumor treatment. The success rate of patients who underwent this brain tumor treatment method is low but the future holds promise.

Surgery is a preferred option for treating brain tumours. But when it is not possible, you may consider immunotherapy by consulting a specialist oncologist at a reputed hospital.

Read more health blogs about:

8 Silent Signs of Brain Tumor You Should Know

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