MD Anderson Research Highlights: SITC 2022 Special Edition

This special edition features upcoming presentations by MD Anderson researchers at the Society for Immunotherapy of Cancer (SITC) 37th Annual Meeting, including immunotherapy advances in human papillomavirus (HPV)-positive head and neck cancers, microbiome signatures linked with specialized immune-cell clusters, and promising early activity from novel immunotherapy drugs in advanced melanoma and colorectal cancer.

MD Anderson Research Highlights for October 19, 2022

The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center’s Research Highlights provides a glimpse into recent basic, translational and clinical cancer research from MD Anderson experts. Current advances include a combination approach to overcome PARP inhibitor resistance in breast and ovarian cancers, a deeper understanding of STAT3 mutations as drivers of disease progression, insights into the “obesity paradox” in men with advanced melanoma, a prognostic model for rapidly progressing vestibular schwannoma, and a role for cellular trafficking proteins in creating a metastasis-promoting lung cancer microenvironment.

Advanced Melanoma Survival Improves Significantly When Immunotherapy is Given Before Targeted Therapy

A clinical trial led by clinicians at Georgetown Lombardi Comprehensive Cancer Center showed a remarkable 20 percent advantage in the two-year overall survival rate for people with advanced melanoma who first received immunotherapy (72 percent survival rate) versus those who initially got targeted therapies (52 percent survival rate). Progression-free survival, where the cancer is stable or improving, was also trending in favor of those who started on immunotherapy.

Wistar Scientists Identify Key Biomarkers that Reliably Predict Response to Immune Checkpoint Inhibitor Therapy for Melanoma 

Currently, the only FDA approved biomarker for ICI melanoma treatment is the tumor mutation burden assay, but the mechanisms linking it to ICI remain unclear. However, new research out of The Wistar Institute now provides evidence of novel, reliable biomarkers that predict therapy response using advanced computer technology.

MD Anderson Research Highlights: ESMO 2022 Special Edition

The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center’s Research Highlights provides a glimpse into recent basic, translational and clinical cancer research from MD Anderson experts. This special edition features upcoming oral presentations by MD Anderson researchers at the European Society for Medical Oncology (ESMO) Congress 2022 focused on clinical advances across a variety of cancer types. Highlights include promising early data from a novel T cell therapy for solid tumors, targeted therapy progress in rare and advanced cancers, biomarkers of immunotherapy response, and features associated with clinical outcomes in leptomeningeal disease. More information on ESMO content from MD Anderson can be found at MDAnderson.org/ESMO.

Moffitt Physicians Lead International Study to Identify Melanoma Patients with High-Risk Disease

In a new study published in the Journal of Clinical Oncology, Moffitt Cancer Center physicians, along with a team of international researchers from eight other cancer centers, report on their identification of high-risk patients with stage 3A disease and microscopic lymph node metastases who would benefit from adjuvant therapy.

MD Anderson Research Highlights for July 27, 2022

Clinical advances include treating hematologic cancers with effective targeted therapies, circulating tumor DNA as a biomarker for recurrence with colorectal liver metastases, and using magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) to guide surgical decisions for patients with lateral pelvic lymph node metastases in rectal cancer. Laboratory findings offer new understanding of the pancreatic cancer immune microenvironment, melanoma cell states, TP53 mutation status in acute myeloid leukemia (AML), and potential targets for metastatic prostate cancer and GNAS-mutant colorectal cancer.

MD Anderson Research Highlights for July 13, 2022

The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center’s Research Highlights provides a glimpse into recent basic, translational and clinical cancer research from MD Anderson experts. Current advances include new targets involved in protecting DNA replication forks and preventing inflammatory responses, a new treatment option for elderly patients with late-stage acute myeloid leukemia, insights into the breast cancer tumor microenvironment, biomarkers of response to targeted and immune therapies, a novel cellular therapy option for osteosarcoma and a new target for inducing ferroptosis in cancer cells.

Plant virus plus immune cell-activating antibody clear colon cancer in mice, prevent recurrence

A new combination therapy to combat cancer could one day consist of a plant virus and an antibody that activates the immune system’s “natural killer” cells, shows a study by researchers at the University of California San Diego. In mouse models of colon cancer, the combination therapy eliminated all tumors and prevented their recurrence, which in turn resulted in 100% survival. The therapy also increased survival in mouse models of melanoma.

MD Anderson Research Highlights for June 1, 2022

Current advances include new biomarkers to predict chimeric antigen receptor (CAR) T cell therapy outcomes and neurotoxicities, novel treatment targets for pre-cancerous pancreatic lesions and T-cell acute lymphoblastic leukemia, a new approach to improve immunotherapy responses in cold tumors, a profile of synthetic lethal targets for cancers with tumor suppressor loss, and promising clinical data for acute myeloid leukemia and cancers of unknown primary.

MD Anderson Research Highlights: ASCO 2022 Special Edition

This special edition features upcoming oral presentations by MD Anderson researchers at the 2022 American Society of Clinical Oncology (ASCO) Annual Meeting focused on quality improvement, health services research, new treatments for skin cancers, and symptoms and survivorship advances. More information on ASCO content from MD Anderson can be found at MDAnderson.org/ASCO.

Next-Generation Immunotherapy Drug Shows Continued Promise in Several Advanced-Stage Cancers

Initial study results show that an experimental drug, called nemvaleukin alfa, when used alone or in combination with another anticancer drug (pembrolizumab) may be effective in treating several types of late-stage cancers in some patients.

National Healthy Skin Month: Dermatologists encourage regular skin checks

The American Academy of Dermatology highlights the importance of regular skin self-exams during National Healthy Skin Month this November. These exams help catch serious conditions early when they are most treatable. Research shows nearly one in four Americans have skin disease. Skin cancer remains the most common cancer in the United States with an estimated 9,500 people diagnosed every day.

Combination immunotherapy improves survival for patients with asymptomatic melanoma brain metastases

Combination treatment with immune checkpoint inhibitors nivolumab and ipilimumab demonstrates overall survival for patients with melanoma that has spread to the brain, according to Phase II study results published today in The Lancet Oncology by researchers from The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center.

Johns Hopkins Cancer Researcher Ashani Weeraratna Appointed To National Cancer Advisory Board By President Biden

Johns Hopkins scientist Ashani Weeraratna, PhD, a leading cancer researcher who specializes in melanoma and the effects of aging on cancer, has been appointed by President Joe Biden to serve as a member of the National Cancer Advisory Board.

How a plant virus could protect and save your lungs from metastatic cancer

Using a virus that grows in black-eyed pea plants, researchers developed a new therapy that could keep metastatic cancers from spreading to the lungs, as well as treat established tumors in the lungs.

UCLA researchers awarded $1M from DOD to advance CAR T cell therapy for rare melanomas

Scientists Dr. Cristina Puig-Saus and Dr. Daniel Shin from the UCLA Jonsson Comprehensive Cancer Center have received a $1 million Translational Research Award from the U.S. Department of Defense Melanoma Research Program to help advance the use of chimeric antigen receptor, or CAR, T cell therapy as a treatment for people with acral, mucosal and uveal melanomas.

Sylvester Comprehensive Cancer Center Researchers Awarded Major Multi-Center Grant to Study Uveal Melanoma

Researchers at the Sylvester Comprehensive Cancer Center in the University of Miami Miller School of Medicine, Moffitt Cancer Center and the University of Florida Health Cancer Center received a five-year, $3.95 million NIH grant to study how uveal melanoma spreads to the liver. This work was previously supported by two Florida State Team Science Awards, which provided early-stage funding to help the team progress to the larger NIH grant.

New grant, National Fellowship for UA Little Rock Nanotechnology Researcher

Dr. K. Bao Vang-Dings, a nanotechnology researcher at the University of Arkansas at Little Rock, has been named one of nine 2021-22 Public Policy Fellows by the American Association of Immunologists. Additionally, the Arkansas IDeA Network of Biomedical Research Excellence (INBRE) has awarded her a 2021 Summer Research Grant to support Vang-Dings’ cancer vaccine research.

Astronomy Meets Pathology to Identify Predictive Biomarkers for Cancer Immunotherapy

Pairing sky-mapping algorithms with advanced immunofluorescence imaging of cancer biopsies, researchers at The Mark Foundation Center for Advanced Genomics and Imaging at Johns Hopkins University and the Bloomberg~Kimmel Institute for Cancer Immunotherapy developed a robust platform to guide immunotherapy by predicting which cancers will respond to specific therapies targeting the immune system.

Dual Immunotherapy Regimen Delays Cancer Progression in Patients with Advanced Melanoma

A treatment regimen for patients with advanced melanoma that combines the immunotherapy agents relatlimab (anti-LAG-3) and nivolumab (anti-PD-1) delayed time to cancer progression significantly more than nivolumab alone, according to results of a study to be presented June 6 at the 2021 American Society of Clinical Oncology (ASCO) annual meeting.

Cleveland Clinic experts available to comment on cancer research presented at ASCO Annual Meeting

Cleveland Clinic cancer researchers are involved with more than 50 studies that’ll be presented at the virtual American Society of Clinical Oncology (ASCO) Annual Meeting, June 4—8, 2021. Key research from Cleveland Clinic focuses on advancements in the prevention and…