Anti-PD-1, What Is It? What’s It Stand For?

Anti-PD-1, What Is It? What’s It Stand For?


This will be a very basic overview. Quick, simple, and will I not write pages and pages to explain everything. I will just give you a very simplified version. When we say Anti-PD-1 we are really talking about PD-1 which is an expression or signal that is used by cancer cells to suppress the immune system. So when we add the Anti to Anti-PD-1 we are saying the inhibition of the signal that suppresses the immune system. Pretty simple right? Check out diagram below.



Tumor micro-environment.

So a drug like Lambrolizumab is called Anti-PD-1 because it inhibits PD-1. Anti-PD-1 changes the Micro-environment of the tumor. It allows immune t-cells to enter and attack the cancer. Otherwise t-cells are given a negative signal which suppresses an immune response making it difficult to infiltrate. That means the immune system can’t reach the cancer. This is an overly simplified explanation of Anti- PD-1. But it gives you a clear understanding of what the term means and what the drugs mode of action is. It’s important that you understand the basics. After that you can dive in deep for more information. Never a bad idea to learn more.



Most successful immunotherapy so far.

Anti-PD-1 is one of the very first successful attempts at immunotherapy that shows activity in many different solid tumor types. It is still only in clinical trials but can still help certain cancer patients who are eligible until it is FDA approved. Please search for available clinical trials in your area or ask your doctor.

Update: This treatment has been approved by the FDA for Melanoma.  More approvals are sure to follow very soon. Will update as soon as data is available. Check back often.




Anti-PD-1, What Is It? What’s It Stand For? was last modified: January 21st, 2017 by Cancermind
CancerMind is powered by science, built on passion, and assembled with the highest degree of dedication. AntiCancer research, facts, and data are fused within our DNA. Let us be the cancer blog you can count on. Help us fight cancer and be a part of our search to find a cancer cure.


  1. Rich Ferraro 1 year ago

    I have been on Astra Zeneca Imfinzi PD-L1 blocker for 18 months as a trial. My stage 4 thymic carcinoma has been in remission during this time. Normally, this is a very aggressive cancer with little research on treatment due to its rarity. Thanks for your terrific and informative website, it is a valuable tool for those of us battling cancer.

    • Author
      Cancermind 1 year ago

      Hi Rich,

      That is amazing to hear. Immunotherapy has a bright future and might just be what we need to finally cure cancer. You are living proof we are making progress and i hope we can save more cancer patients like you. Great time for positive news while we all see daily negative updates about the corona virus (COVID-19).

Leave a reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *