Journal of Cancer Prevention

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Fig. 2. Mechanisms of programmed cell death protein-1 (PD-1) and programmed death ligand-1 (PD-L1) checkpoint inhibitors in immunotherapy and immunoprevention. T cell activation occurs through the binding of the T cell receptor (TCR) to antigens present on the major histocompatibility complex (MHC) located on APC (e.g., tumor cell) surface. PD-1 is an inhibitory transmembrane protein expressed on the surface of T cells and other immune cells. PD-1 binds to its ligand PD-L1 on tumor cells and weakens T cell immune activity (weakened T effector cells in the figure). PD-1 and PD-L1 inhibitors elicit antitumor response by preventing PD-1 and PD-L1 checkpoints from binding to each other, leading to active T effector cells, cytokine release, and strong immune response.
J Cancer Prev 2020;25:127~135
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