Innovation in Bladder Cancer Immunotherapy

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Abstract

Bladder cancer is understudied despite its high prevalence and its remarkable response to immunotherapy. Indeed, funding for studies to explore mechanisms of tumor immunity and novel new therapeutics is disproportionately lower for bladder cancer in comparison with malignancies of the breast, prostate, or lung. However, the recent successes of checkpoint blockade therapy suggest that new therapeutic strategies are on the horizon for bladder cancer. Here, we give a perspective into the evolution of bladder cancer therapy, focusing on strategies to treat high-risk nonmuscle invasive disease, followed by a discussion of recent advances in the treatment of muscle invasive bladder cancer and their potential applicability to lower stage disease. Finally, we explore immunotherapeutic strategies, which have been demonstrated to be successful in the treatment of other malignancies, for their potential to treat and cure patients with nonmuscle and muscle invasive bladder cancer.

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