Adding immune-boosting agent to personalized cancer vaccine supercharges the body’s immune defense against malignant brain tumors

Investigators at the UCLA Health Jonsson Comprehensive Cancer Center have pinpointed a combination immunotherapy treatment that enhances the immune response for people with malignant gliomas, an aggressive type of brain tumor that is fast growing and difficult to treat.

Pancreatic cancer is difficult to treat. Nano-drugs hitching a ride on bacteria could help.

Many pancreatic tumors are like malignant fortresses, surrounded by a dense matrix of collagen and other tissue that shields them from immune cells and immunotherapies that have been effective in treating other cancers. Employing bacteria to infiltrate that cancerous fortification and deliver these drugs could aid treatment for pancreatic cancer, according to newly published findings from a team of University of Wisconsin–Madison researchers.

Getting Under the Skin at May 11 Symposium on Melanoma

The Angeles Clinic and Research Institute, an affiliate of Cedars-Sinai Cancer, is teaming up with the AIM at Melanoma Foundation for the 14th year to host a free melanoma symposium for patients, caregivers and clinicians.

Unlocking the immune system: cGAS-STING pathway offers new hope for cancer breakthroughs

A groundbreaking study has recognized the cGAS-STING signaling pathway as a formidable ally in the immune system’s battle against cancer. This pivotal discovery may pave the way for innovative immunotherapies capable of amplifying the body’s inherent defenses to detect and eradicate cancer cells, signifying a substantial advance towards more potent cancer treatments.

Cancer cell–immune cell interactions predict immunotherapy response

By examining which genes were turned on and off in a mix of cell types from breast cancer biopsies, a team led by UT Southwestern Medical Center researchers developed a tool that can accurately predict which patients with breast cancer will respond to immunotherapies.

Could the liver hold the key to better cancer treatments?

Liver inflammation, a common side-effect of cancers elsewhere in the body, has long been associated with worse cancer outcomes and more recently associated with poor response to immunotherapy. Now, a team led by researchers from the Abramson Cancer Center and Perelman School of Medicine at the University of Pennsylvania has found a big reason why.

MD Anderson Research Highlights for April 12, 2024

The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center’s Research Highlights showcases the latest breakthroughs in cancer care, research and prevention. These advances are made possible through seamless collaboration between MD Anderson’s world-leading clinicians and scientists, bringing discoveries from the lab to the clinic and back.

AACR: Novel immunotherapies show promise for patients with kidney cancer and for solid organ transplant recipients with skin cancer

Researchers from The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center presented encouraging findings today from two clinical trials in a plenary session highlighting advances in novel immunotherapy approaches at the American Association for Cancer Research (AACR) Annual Meeting 2024.

AACR: MD Anderson’s Padmanee Sharma elected Fellow of the AACR Academy

Padmanee Sharma, M.D., Ph.D., associate vice president of Immunobiology, professor of Genitourinary Medical Oncology and Immunology, and director of scientific programs for the James P. Allison Institute at The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center, has been elected to the 2024 class of Fellows of the American Association for Cancer Research (AACR) Academy in recognition of her work to establish and advance immune checkpoint therapies as effective treatments for patients with a variety of cancers.

Clinical Trial Results Published in Nature Medicine Show Immunotherapy’s Potential in Resectable Esophageal and Gastroesophageal Junction Cancers and the Benefits of Monitoring Circulating Tumor DNA (ctDNA) to Measure Disease Response

The results of a study published today in Nature Medicine show exciting immune responses in patients with operable esophageal or gastroesophageal cancers given neoadjuvant immunotherapy. The study results also show the potential for monitoring circulating tumor DNA as a predictor for future intervention.

Circulating Tumor DNA Levels Predict Treatment Outcomes for Patients with Gastroesophageal Cancer Treated with a Novel Immunotherapy Combination

Monitoring levels of DNA shed by tumors and circulating in the bloodstream could help doctors accurately assess how gastroesophageal cancers are responding to treatment, and potentially predict future prognosis, suggests a new study led by researchers at the Johns Hopkins Kimmel Cancer Center and its Bloomberg~Kimmel Institute for Cancer Immunotherapy.

LJI welcomes new faculty member Miguel Reina-Campos, Ph.D.

Cancer researcher Miguel Reina-Campos, Ph.D., has joined the faculty of La Jolla Institute for Immunology (LJI) as an Assistant Professor to lead the Laboratory of Tissue Immune Networks. His laboratory at LJI aims to investigate the basis of CD8+ T cell tissue immunity to improve life-saving cancer immunotherapies.

Immune Cell Receptor Provides Promising Immunotherapy Target

Drugs that target a receptor on immune cells called activin receptor 1C may combat tumor-induced immune suppression and help patients’ immune systems fight back against cancer, according to a study by investigators at the Johns Hopkins Kimmel Cancer Center and its Bloomberg~Kimmel Institute for Cancer Immunotherapy.

New Trial Highlights Incremental Progress Towards a Cure for HIV-1

A new clinical trial, led by clinicians and researchers at the UNC School of Medicine, show that the combination of the drug vorinostat and immunotherapy may modestly shrink the latent HIV reservoir, but more work needs to be done in the field to create a cure.

Immunotherapy before surgery leads to promising long-term survival in sarcoma patients

Patients with soft-tissue sarcoma treated with neoadjuvant, or pre-surgical, immunotherapy had very little residual tumor at the time of surgery and promising long-term survival, according to Phase II trial results published today in Nature Cancer by researchers at The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center

Novel bispecific design improves CAR T–cell immunotherapy for childhood leukemia

Findings from St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital showed a novel dual targeting approach, where a single molecule can recognize two potential cancer-related proteins, is more effective than the single targeting approach, preventing immune escape.

Why a Targeted Therapy Is Better Than Immunotherapy For Some Patients With Inoperable Non-Small Cell Lung Cancer

Non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC), with an epidermal growth factor receptor (EGFR) mutation, tends not to respond well to immunotherapy treatments, including durvalumab. However, Yale Cancer Center (YCC) researchers recently reported in the Journal of Thoracic Oncology that the targeted therapy osimertinib, when administered after chemotherapy and radiation, is associated with significantly improved progression-free survival (living without the cancer worsening).

Researchers Discover Why One Type of Chemotherapy Works Best in Bladder Cancer

Tisch Cancer Institute researchers discovered that a certain type of chemotherapy improves the immune system’s ability to fight off bladder cancer, particularly when combined with immunotherapy, according to a study published in Cell Reports Medicine in January.

Pathologic Scoring Shows Promise for Assessing Lung Tumor Therapy Response

A new pathologic scoring system that accurately assesses how much lung tumor is left after a patient receives presurgical cancer treatments can be used to predict survival, according to new research led by investigators at the Bloomberg~Kimmel Institute for Cancer Immunotherapy at the Johns Hopkins Kimmel Cancer Center and the Mark Foundation Center for Advanced Genomics and Imaging at the Johns Hopkins University.

Lung cancer outcomes significantly improved with immunotherapy-based treatment given before and after surgery

A regimen of pre-surgical immunotherapy and chemotherapy followed by post-surgical immunotherapy significantly improved event-free survival (EFS) and pathologic complete response (pCR) rates compared to chemotherapy alone for patients with operable non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC), according to results of a Phase III trial reported by researchers at The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center.

ESMO: Pre- and post-surgical immunotherapy improves outcomes for patients with operable lung cancer

Perioperative immunotherapy plus neoadjuvant chemotherapy significantly improved event-free survival (EFS) in patients with resectable early-stage non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC) compared to chemotherapy alone. Results from the Phase III CheckMate 77T study were presented today at the 2023 European Society of Medical Oncology (ESMO) Congress by researchers from The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center.

Nanoparticle vaccine could curb cancer metastasis to lungs by targeting a protein

UC San Diego engineers have developed an experimental vaccine that could prevent the spread of metastatic cancers to the lungs. Its success lies in targeting a protein known to play a central role in cancer growth and spread, rather than targeting the primary tumor itself.

MD Anderson Research Highlights: ESMO 2023 Special Edition

This special edition features upcoming oral presentations by MD Anderson researchers at the 2023 European Society for Medical Oncology (ESMO) Congress focused on clinical advances across a variety of cancer types.

Capturing Immunotherapy Response in a Blood Drop

Liquid biopsies are blood tests that can serially measure circulating tumor DNA (cell-free DNA that is shed into the bloodstream by dying cancer cells). When used in patients with advanced non-small cell lung cancer undergoing immunotherapy, they may identify patients who could benefit from treatment with additional drugs, according to a phase 2 clinical trial in the U.S. and Canada. The trial is led by investigators at the Johns Hopkins Kimmel Cancer Center and its Bloomberg~Kimmel Institute for Cancer Immunotherapy, BC Cancer and the Canadian Cancer trials Group (CCTG).

Jennifer Wargo, M.D., elected to the National Academy of Medicine

Jennifer Wargo, M.D., professor of Surgical Oncology and Genomic Medicine at The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center, has been elected to the National Academy of Medicine (NAM) for her contributions to the understanding of melanoma treatment response and resistance to cancer therapies, including groundbreaking discoveries that reveal how the gut microbiome influences responses to immunotherapy.

Cleveland Clinic’s Timothy Chan, M.D., Ph.D., Elected To National Academy of Medicine

Timothy Chan, M.D., Ph.D., chair of Cleveland Clinic’s Global Center for Immunotherapy and Precision Immuno-Oncology and Sheikha Fatima Bint Mubarak Endowed Chair in Immunotherapy and Precision Immuno-Oncology, has been elected to the National Academy of Medicine (NAM), one of the highest honors in the fields of health and medicine.

Advanced Bladder Cancer Patients Could Keep Their Bladder Under New Treatment Regime, Clinical Trial Shows

Mount Sinai investigators have developed a new approach for treating invasive bladder cancer without the need for surgical removal of the bladder, according to a study published in Nature Medicine in September.

MD Anderson Research Highlights for September 21, 2023

The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center’s Research Highlights showcases the latest breakthroughs in cancer care, research and prevention. These advances are made possible through seamless collaboration between MD Anderson’s world-leading clinicians and scientists, bringing discoveries from the lab to the clinic and back.

AI more accurately identifies patients with advanced lung cancer that respond to immunotherapy and helps doctors select treatments

Treatment planning for lung cancer can often be complex due to variations in assessing immune biomarkers. In a new study, Yale Cancer Center researchers at Yale School of Medicine used artificial intelligence (AI) tools and digital pathology to improve the accuracy of this process.