Highlights from the Literature
Cancer Immunol Res May 1 2017 5 (5) 345-345;
Acquired resistance to checkpoint therapy is a growing clinical issue. This large retrospective study of anti-PD-1–treated progressing patients found that isolated disease treated with localized therapy or anti-PD-1 resumption often produced durable benefits, which may guide clinical management.
Blocking CD47 interactions was a potent antitumor therapy for NSCLC. Cells resist death by increasing autophagy; simultaneously inhibiting autophagy provided a synergistic antitumor effect, providing a scientific basis for enhancing the efficacy of immune checkpoint inhibitors.
The identification of neoepitopes expressed by tumors will aid the effectiveness of antitumor therapies. Four classes of posttranslationally modified tumor neoantigens were identified on primary tumors. Healthy donors had detectable natural immunity to a subset of these.
STAT6 plays a role in inflammation and in some malignancies. It was found to fuel colitis-related colorectal cancer in a mouse model. Its absence decreased the number of tumors by inhibiting early steps in the progression to colon cancer.
Tumor-infiltrating lymphocytes contain γδ T cells. In early-stage SCC tumors, γδ T cells had antitumor properties, such as production of IFNγ. However, clinically advanced tumors contained many more γδ T cells that produced IL-17 and promoted tumor growth.
Cetuximab tumor-specific monotherapy for head and neck cancers is effective in less than 20% of cases. Cytolytic T cells were found to be increased, yet expressed PD-1 and TIM-3. Addition of checkpoint blockade could potentially improve clinical outcomes.
The association between metastatic site and responses to anti-PD-1 immunotherapy was explored In both melanoma and lung cancer. Liver metastasis was associated with worse outcome and CD8+ T cell-poor tumors, suggesting a potential mechanism for the outcomes.