Implications of Immunotherapy for Pediatric Malignancies: A Summary from the APSA Cancer Committee

Lindsay J. Talbot*, Timothy B. Lautz, Jennifer H. Aldrink, Peter F. Ehrlich, Roshni Dasgupta, Peter Mattei, Elisabeth T. Tracy, Richard D. Glick, Christa M. Grant, Erin G. Brown, Emily R. Christison-Lagay, David A. Rodeberg

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

1 Scopus citations


Although survival for many pediatric cancers has improved with advances in conventional chemotherapeutic regimens and surgical techniques in the last several decades, it remains a leading cause of disease-related death in children. Outcomes in patients with recurrent, refractory, or metastatic disease are especially poor. Recently, the advent of alternative classes of therapies, including immunotherapies, have revolutionized systemic treatment for pediatric malignancies. Several classes of immunotherapies, including chimeric antigen receptor (CAR) T cell therapy, transgenic T-cell receptor (TCR)-T cell therapy, bispecific T-cell engagers, and monoclonal antibody checkpoint inhibitors have been FDA-approved or entered early-phase clinical trials in children and young adults. The pediatric surgeon is likely to encounter these therapies during the care of children with malignancies and should be familiar with the classes of therapy, indications, adverse events, and potential need for surgical intervention in these cases. This review from the APSA Cancer Committee offers a brief discussion of the three most encountered classes of immunotherapy in children and young adults and discusses surgical relevance. Level of Evidence: IV.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)2119-2127
Number of pages9
JournalJournal of pediatric surgery
Issue number11
StatePublished - Nov 2023


  • BiTE
  • CAR T cell
  • Cancer
  • Checkpoint inhibitor
  • Immunotherapy
  • Transgenic TCR-T cell

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Surgery
  • Pediatrics, Perinatology, and Child Health


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