Risks and risk management in modern multiple sclerosis immunotherapeutic treatment.
ABSTRACT: In recent years, there has been a paradigm shift in the treatment of multiple sclerosis (MS) owing to the approval of a number of new drugs with very distinct mechanisms of action. All approved disease-modifying drugs primarily work directly on the immune system. However, the identification of an 'optimal choice' for individual patients with regard to treatment efficacy, treatment adherence and side-effect profile has become increasingly complex including conceptual as well as practical considerations. Similarly, there are peculiarities and specific requirements with regard to treatment monitoring, especially in relation to immunosuppression, the development of secondary immune-related complications, as well as the existence of drug-specific on- and off-target effects. Both classical immunosuppression and selective immune interventions generate a spectrum of potential therapy-related complications. This article provides a comprehensive overview of available immunotherapeutics for MS and their risks, detailing individual mechanisms of action and side-effect profiles. Furthermore, practical recommendations for patients treated with modern MS immunotherapeutics are provided.
Project description:For biliary tract carcinoma (BTC), complete surgical resection of tumor is only feasible in a minority of patients, and the treatment options for patients with unresectable or metastatic disease are limited. Advances in cancer immunology have led to identification of tumor-infiltrating immune cells as indicators of prognosis and response to treatment in BTC. This has also facilitated development of immunotherapy that focuses on enhancing the immune system against biliary tumors. This includes peptide- and dendritic cell-based vaccines that stimulate in-vivo immune responses against tumor-specific antigens. Adoptive immunotherapy, which entails the ex-vivo expansion of tumor-infiltrating immune cells for subsequent reintroduction, and cytokine-based therapies have been developed in BTC. Clinical studies indicate that this type of therapy is generally well tolerated. Combination therapy with dendritic cell-based vaccines and adoptive immunotherapy has shown particularly good potential. Emerging strategies through discovery of novel antigen targets and by reversal of tumor-associated immunosuppression are expected to improve the efficacy of immunotherapy in BTC. Collaborative efforts by integration of targeted immunotherapeutics with molecular profiling of biliary tumor will hopefully make a positive impact on advancing towards the goal of developing precision treatment of patients with this highly lethal disease.
Project description:Outcome for glioblastoma (GBM), the most common primary CNS malignancy, remains poor. The overall survival benefit recently achieved with immunotherapeutics for melanoma and prostate cancer support evaluation of immunotherapies for other challenging cancers, including GBM. Much historical dogma depicting the CNS as immunoprivileged has been replaced by data demonstrating CNS immunocompetence and active interaction with the peripheral immune system. Several glioma antigens have been identified for potential immunotherapeutic exploitation. Active immunotherapy studies for GBM, supported by preclinical data, have focused on tumor lysate and synthetic antigen vaccination strategies. Results to date confirm consistent safety, including a lack of autoimmune reactivity; however, modest efficacy and variable immunogenicity have been observed. These findings underscore the need to optimize vaccination variables and to address challenges posed by systemic and local immunosuppression inherent to GBM tumors. Additional immunotherapy strategies are also in development for GBM. Future studies may consider combinatorial immunotherapy strategies with complimentary actions.
Project description:Gliomas are primary malignancies of the brain. Tumors are staged based on malignancy, nuclear atypia, and infiltration of the surrounding brain parenchyma. Tumors are often diagnosed once patients become symptomatic, at which time the lesion is sizable. Glioblastoma (grade IV glioma) is highly aggressive and difficult to treat. Most tumors are diagnosed de novo. The gold standard of therapy, implemented over a decade ago, consists of fractionated radiotherapy and temozolomide, but unfortunately, chemotherapeutic resistance arises. Recurrence is common after initial therapy. The tumor microenvironment plays a large role in cancer progression and its manipulation can repress progression. The advent and implementation of immunotherapy, via manipulation and activation of cytotoxic T cells, have had an outstanding impact on reducing morbidity and mortality associated with peripheral cancers under certain clinical circumstances. An arsenal of immunotherapeutics is currently under clinical investigation for safety and efficacy in the treatment of newly diagnosed and recurrent high grade gliomas. These immunotherapeutics encompass antibody-drug conjugates, autologous infusions of modified chimeric antigen receptor expressing T cells, peptide vaccines, autologous dendritic cell vaccines, immunostimulatory viruses, oncolytic viruses, checkpoint blockade inhibitors, and drugs which alter the behavior of innate immune cells. Effort is focusing on determining which patient populations will benefit the most from these treatments and why. Research addressing synergism between treatment options is gaining attention. While advances in the treatment of glioma stagnated in the past, we may see a considerable evolution in the management of the disease in the upcoming years.
Project description:Immunotherapy has shown great promise to transform solid cancer treatment. The challenge is to optimally incorporate novel immunotherapeutics, such as immune checkpoint blockers, with standard therapies. This is well exemplified by multimodal therapies recently developed for liver cancer in which immunomodulation using CXCR4 inhibition prevented immunosuppression and enhanced sorafenib and anti-PD-1 therapeutic outcome.
Project description:Glypican 3 (GPC3) is a heparan sulfate proteoglycan and cell surface oncofetal protein which is highly expressed on a variety of pediatric solid embryonal tumors including the majority of hepatoblastomas, Wilms tumors, rhabdoid tumors, certain germ cell tumor subtypes, and a minority of rhabdomyosarcomas. Via both its core protein and heparan sulfate side chains, GPC3 activates the canonical Wnt/?-catenin pathway, which is frequently overexpressed in these malignancies. Loss of function mutations in GPC3 lead to Simpson-Golabi-Behmel Syndrome, an X-linked overgrowth condition with a predisposition to GPC3-expressing cancers including hepatoblastoma and Wilms tumor. There are several immunotherapeutic approaches to targeting GPC3, including vaccines, monoclonal antibodies, antibody-drug conjugates, bispecific antibodies, cytolytic T lymphocytes, and CAR T cells. These therapies offer a potentially novel means to target these pediatric solid embryonal tumors. A key pediatric-specific consideration of GPC3-targeted immunotherapeutics is that GPC3 can be physiologically expressed in normal tissues during the first year of life, particularly in the liver and kidney. In summary, this article reviews the current evidence for targeting childhood cancers with GPC3-directed immunotherapies.
Project description:Cellular immunotherapy can be an effective adjuvant treatment for multiple myeloma (MM), as demonstrated by induction of durable remissions after allogeneic stem cell transplantation. However, anti-myeloma immunity is often hampered by suppressive mechanisms in the tumor micro-environment resulting in relapse or disease progression. To overcome this immunosuppression, new cellular immunotherapies have been developed, based on the important effector cells in anti-myeloma immunity, namely T cells and natural killer cells. These effectors can be modulated to improve their functionality, activated by dendritic cell vaccines, or combined with immune stimulating antibodies or immunomodulatory drugs to enhance their efficacy. In this review, we discuss promising pre-clinical and clinical data in the field of cellular immunotherapy in MM. In addition, we address the potential of combining these strategies with other therapies to maximize clinical effects without increasing toxicity. The reviewed therapies might pave the way to effective personalized treatments for MM patients.
Project description:Improvements in median overall survival in the advanced oesophagogastric (OG) setting have plateaued, underlining the need for improved therapeutic approaches in this patient population. Immunotherapeutics are inducing unexpected durable responses in an expanding list of advanced disease indications. Although OG cancers have traditionally been considered to be more challenging to treat with immunotherapy than some other malignancies because of their variable tumour mutational burden and relative scarcity of infiltrating T cells, immune checkpoint inhibitor (ICPI) trials conducted over the last few years suggest there is an important role for these treatments. ICPI efficacy may be demonstrated in specific molecular subtypes of OG cancer. This review outlines the improvements in defining predictive biomarkers of responsiveness to ICPIs. Increasingly, identification of an expanding list of ICPI resistance mechanisms will drive biomarker-directed research. In addition, the specific rationale to combine ICPIs with chemotherapies, radiotherapies, targeted therapies and other novel immunotherapeutic drugs will be discussed.
Project description:An increasing number of oncologic patients are presenting to the intensive care unit with complications from both their chronic disease states and cancer therapies due to improved survival rates. The management of these patients is complex due to immunosuppression (from the malignancy and/or treatment), metabolic complications, and diverse medication regimens with the potential for significant drug-drug interactions and overlapping adverse effects. This chapter will provide clinicians with an overview of non-chemotherapy medications frequently encountered in the critically ill oncologic patient, with a focus on practical considerations.
Project description:Abstract BACKGROUND Glioblastoma is the most common malignant primary brain tumor in adults with an urgent need for novel treatment options. The administration of pro-inflammatory cytokines could be a potent immunotherapeutic approach to shift the balance between tumor-associated immunosuppression and immune activation. However, the systemic administration of therapeutically active doses of pro-inflammatory cytokines is not feasible due to toxic side effects and there is a need for strategies that enable a targeted delivery of pro-inflammatory cytokines to the tumor site. METHODS We investigated different antibody-cytokine fusion products that enable a targeted delivery of interleukin (IL)-2, IL-12 or tumor necrosis factor (TNF)-? to the tumor site by binding to a tumor-specific epitope of fibronectin. We investigated the expression of this tumor-specific epitope ex vivo in tumor-bearing mouse brains and human glioblastoma samples. Subsequently, we assessed the anti-tumor activity of IL-2, IL-12 or TNF-? fused to an antibody targeting this tumor-specific epitope in orthotopic syngeneic mouse glioma models. RESULTS The tumor-specfic extra domain B of fibronectin is expressed in murine glioma models and human glioblastoma samples. A fluorochrome-labeled antibody targeting this tumor-specific epitope accumulated at the tumor site in the brain in vivo upon systemic administration. IL-2, IL-12, or TNF-? fused to this antibody conferred a survival benefit in orthotopic tumor-bearing mice and cured a fraction of tumor-bearing mice. Mechanistically, antibody-fused TNF-? induced tumor necrosis and increased the activation of tumor-infiltrating natural killer (NK) cells, whereas antibody-fused IL-12 mainly boosted an anti-tumor immune response mediated by NK cells and T cells. CONCLUSION We demonstrate the expression of a tumor-specific epitope of fibronectin in glioblastoma and exploit this for the targeted delivery of IL-2, IL-12 or TNF-? to the tumor site. Our preclinical assessments indicate potent anti-tumor activity in orthotopic, syngneic glioma mouse models and reveal the mode of action for the different immunocytokines. Based on these findings, we initiated a phase I/II clinical trial in patients with recurrent glioma to investigate the targeted delivery of TNF-? (ClinicalTrials.gov identifier NCT03779230).
Project description:Natalizumab is a humanized recombinant monoclonal antibody against very late activation antigen-4 approved for the treatment of patients with multiple sclerosis (MS). A phase II study failed to demonstrate a difference between natalizumab treatment groups and the placebo group with regard to gadolinium enhancing lesions on MRI 3 months after discontinuation of therapy. The objective of this study was to assess clinical MS disease activity, surrogate disease markers on MRI, immunologic parameters in peripheral blood and CSF, as well as safety in patients with MS after discontinuation of natalizumab therapy.This study is a longitudinal and serial cross-sectional assessment, in which 23 patients who were treated with natalizumab in the context of two phase III clinical trials were originally enrolled. A subgroup of patients was followed over 14 months. The annual relapse rate, neurologic disease progression assessed by the Expanded Disability Status Scale, disease surrogate markers on MRI, cellular and humoral immune markers in peripheral blood and CSF, and adverse events of the drug were monitored.With regard to clinical disease activity, neuroimaging, and immune responses, the majority of patients in our cohort were stable. Decreased lymphocyte cell numbers and altered cell ratios returned to normal 14 months after cessation of natalizumab. No infectious complications were observed.This is the first long-term follow-up of patients who discontinued natalizumab. We did not observe a clinical, radiographic, or immunologic rebound phenomenon after discontinuation of natalizumab therapy.