Cancer immunotherapy has turned out to be a revolutionary treatment to fight against this largest group of diseases in the world. The artificial stimulation of the immune system enhances the natural ability of the body to fight against cancer. The field on immunotherapy shows a great potential in treating a wide range of types of cancers. Over 8,000 cancer immunotherapy experiments are taking place in clinical trials along with which includes rapid development of biomarkers. The smart and effective immunotherapy is already transforming cancer treatment approach while biomarkers, in addition, will help to identify appropriate therapies that suit the best to a particular patient. It will also be helpful in monitoring the response of the treatment.
Biomarkers certainly have the potential to provide useful insight into the treatment approach. Hence it comes as no surprise that it’s being part of many phases of the clinical trial process. Here are the four trends in cancer immunotherapy biomarkers that can make a headway in improving the response rate of patients.
Combination of tretaments:
A recent research shows that instead of a particular treatment, a combination of multiple tretaments is more effective and can lead to positive results. Hence more emphasis is given to developing combination treatments. Studies have analyzed that PD-1 in conjunction with CTLA-4 inhibitors used as the therapy for melanoma has shown positive results in a considerable number of patients. It is also predicted that enhancement in tissue biomarkers and extensive study of immune response can effectively help in developing more safe and positive resulting treatments for cancer. Combination treatments can be a powerful game-changer, certainly, watch out for that.
Relation of tumor mutation burden to the response rate:
At a World Conference on Lung Cancer in 2017, researchers presented a data that revealed high TMB may lead to better outcomes as compared to low or medium TMB. The prediction is irrespective to the type of treatment. TMB which means Tumor Mutation Burden is a term that evaluates the number of mutations in a particular area of the genetic material. Higher the TMB, higher are chances of positive outcome in response to immunotherapy. The response rate is significantly higher in patients who received a combination of different therapies with high TMB as compared to those patients who received single therapy.
Cutting-edge technology for the development of biomarker:
The genomic and proteomic technologies in combination with bioinformatic tools have shown the capability of the simultaneous breakdown of thousands of molecules which are biological in nature. The new tumor signatures can relevantly be founded with the help of such leading-edge technologies which are significant in creating precision medicines and analyzing personalized cancer therapy. Just to name a few, whole-exome sequencing, T-cell receptor clonality sequencing technology, gene expression profiling, mass cytometry are some of the innovative techniques that are bringing the change in cancer treatment.
PD-1/PD-L1 immune checkpoint blockade
Studies suggest that checkpoint blockade is most likely to be an effective way. However, these immune checkpoint inhibitors are only effective on a few sets of patients. Biomarkers for discovering the response to PD-1/PD-L1 comprise of microsatellite instability (MSI), D-L1 expression and tumor mutation burden (TMB). Studies also further suggest that there is a need of examination of the potential utilization of PDL1 developments as a biomarker for immune checkpoint blockade response.
There is a strong requirement for identifying predictive and prognostic markers so as to find therapies and precision medicine for a particular patient. Cancer Immunotherapy Biomarkers development creates a golden opportunity is discovering a treatment that’s appropriate for a specific patient, it can surely bring a revolution in the fight against cancer.