Targeted Drugs and Immunotherapies May Lower Risk of Therapy-Related Hematologic Cancers

While breakthrough treatments have emerged for several cancers over the last two decades, driving striking improvements in survival and other clinical outcomes, too little is known about the risk of therapy-related hematologic cancers following targeted and immunotherapeutic approaches. In a study to be presented at the American Society of Clinical Oncology (ASCO) 2020 virtual meeting, a Roswell Park Comprehensive Cancer Center team reports that in many cases, these newer treatment approaches may reduce the risk of therapy-related myelodysplastic syndrome or acute myeloid leukemia (tMDS/AML) compared to chemotherapy-based treatment strategies.

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Scientists identify promising immunotherapy combination for pediatric brain cancer

Scientists at Sanford Burnham Prebys have discovered that combining immunotherapy with a drug called tumor necrosis factor (TNF) eradicated a deadly type of pediatric brain tumor in mice. The discovery, published in Nature Neuroscience, is expected to lead to a clinical trial to test the benefits of the treatment in patients. The findings also hold implications for other cancers that do not respond to immunotherapy.

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Roswell Park Team Proposes Strategy for Making Pancreatic Tumors Respond to Checkpoint Inhibition

A possible new strategy for treating pancreatic cancer highlights the promise of collaboration between experts in both precision medicine and immunology. The findings from a team led by Agnieszka Witkiewicz, MD, and Erik Knudsen, PhD, at Roswell Park Comprehensive Cancer Center and published today in the journal Gut suggest a combination treatment approach that can make some breakthrough immunotherapy drugs effective for more patients with pancreatic cancer.

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UAH research into developing artificial lymph nodes has immunotherapy implications

Research into engineering artificial organs that mimic the functions of human lymph nodes at The University of Alabama in Huntsville (UAH) has garnered one of its professors a $507,777 National Science Foundation (NSF) Faculty Early Career Development Program (CAREER) Award.

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Designer Probiotic Treatment for Cancer Immunotherapy

Columbia Engineers have engineered probiotics to safely deliver immunotherapies within tumors, including nanobodies against two proven therapeutic targets—PD-L1 and CTLA-4. Continuously released by bacteria, the drugs continue to attack the tumor after just one dose, facilitating an immune response resulting in tumor regression. The versatile probiotic platform can also be used to deliver multiple immunotherapies simultaneously, enabling the release of effective therapeutic combinations within the tumor for more difficult-to-treat cancers like colorectal cancer.

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