A research project led by the University of Western Australia in collaboration with the Telethon Kids Institute and 13 health research organizations has identified the main differences between cancers that respond to immunotherapy and those that do not.
The discovery, which has the potential to improve cancer treatment, is published in the journal Translational medicine of science.
The treatment of immunotherapy works by improving the immune response of the body to help fight cancer.
The scientist Dr. Rachael Zemek, who completed work as part of his doctorate at the national center of diseases related to UWA asbestos and is now based on the Institute of Telethonics, this immunotherapy could lead to the complete disappearance of cancer In a handful of patients, but it is unknown why it worked for some people and not for others.
"Through our research we have found that, by activating a determined immune pathway prior to treatment, we could drastically increase the response to the treatment of immunotherapy in mice," said Dr. Zemek.
"We have developed a unique way to analyze cancer samples before treatment and then compare the genes between response cancers and those who do not respond," he said.
After analyzing the genes found in cancer samples, researchers were surprised to see that, even before immunotherapy, one could know what type of cancer they were going to respond to.
Dr. Joost Lesterhuis of the UWA Biomedical Sciences School and the Telethon Kids Institute, who directed the research and supervised Dr. Zemek during the study, said that after the team identified drugs that could increase the expression of genes to increase the response to the treatment of immunotherapy. .
"Preparing the immune system before therapy, can strengthen the response," said Dr. Lesterhuis.
"This has an interesting future potential to help more patients with cancer to benefit from immunotherapy"
The method has not yet been tested in people with cancer who have received immunotherapy; nevertheless, the clinical trials could begin in the next years.
The study indicates the causes of relapse after immunotherapy against cancer
Rachael M. Zemek et al. Awareness to block the immune control point by activating an STAT1 / NK axis to the tumor's micro-environment, Translational medicine of science (2019). DOI: 10.1126 / scitranslmed.aav7816
Researchers open clues to improve cancer treatment (2019, July 18)
recovered on July 18, 2019
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