Nature Outlook 

Cancer immunotherapy

Drugs that mobilize our immune systems against cancer are dramatically improving care for many people, and research is rapidly moving ahead in the lab and the clinic.

This Nature Outlook is editorially independent. It is produced with third party financial support. About this content.

Nature is pleased to acknowledge the financial support of F. Hoffmann-La Roche and MedImmune, the global biologics research and development arm of AstraZeneca, in producing this Outlook. Additional funding was provided by a grant from Merck & Co., Inc. in Kenilworth, New Jersey. The sponsor retains sole responsibility for the following messages.

For more than 50 years, Roche has been at the forefront of oncology research, discovering and developing new cancer treatments and diagnostics. Now, we are expanding the impact of our medicines through a disciplined study of the biology and immunology of cancer to enhance our understanding of the interplay between immune system, tumour microenvironment and tumour. Building on the foundational framework of the cancer-immunity cycle, we are investigating novel molecules and combinations to address immune escape mechanisms at multiple points in the cancer-immunity cycle.

Through these efforts, Roche aims to shift cancer from a life-threatening disease to a chronic, manageable one by using the patient’s own immune system to fight his or her disease, and this, ultimately, has the potential to drive a paradigm shift in cancer care. For more information, please visit

A community map of cancer immunity
Collaborate with peers to update, evolve and strengthen the cancer-immune set point framework.

MedImmune is the global biologics research and development arm of AstraZeneca, a global, innovation-driven biopharmaceutical business that focuses on the discovery, development and commercialization of small molecule and biologic prescription medicines. MedImmune is pioneering innovative research and exploring novel pathways across Oncology, Respiratory, Cardiovascular & Metabolic Diseases, and Infection and Vaccines. The MedImmune headquarters is located in Gaithersburg, Md., one of AstraZeneca’s three global R&D centres, with additional sites in Cambridge, UK and Mountain View, CA.

MedImmune and AstraZeneca are developing multiple ways to target tumors by triggering and strengthening the immune system and removing barriers to immune response. We believe in the promise of combinations. Beyond monotherapies, we are also investigating our leading IO pipeline in combination with other immunotherapies, small molecules, and chemotherapies. We use precision medicine to identify tumors to study; patients who may respond to treatment; and markers of immune resistance- all to further our understanding of the immune landscape and achieve our vision of eliminating cancer as a cause of death.

For more information, please visit

Read the sponsor's message.

Produced with support of a grant from Merck & Co., Inc. in Kenilworth, New Jersey.