Weekly Digests

2018

October

Tumors that hide away their HLA

October 31, 2018

Understanding how and why tumors become resistant to immunotherapy is one of the key obstacles in expanding the portion of patients who achieve a durable benefit from treatment. While some cancers show obvious mutations or genetic loss of antigen presentation, most cases of cancer relapse lack a clear mechanism of resistance. In two patients...

When CAR T cell therapy crashes

October 24, 2018

In two recent papers published in Nature Medicine, researchers documented two mechanisms, one anticipated and one unexpected, for the relapse of B cell acute lymphoblastic leukemia (B-ALL) after CAR T cell treatment. Ruella, Xu, and Barrett et al. explored the unusual case of a 20-year-old male with B-ALL who enrolled in a clinical...

Tumors get cozy in the LAP of macrophages

October 17, 2018

In the early stages of tumor development, the process of autophagy (degradation of intracellular components) protects against the emergence of malignant cells; however, in more established cancers, autophagy can promote tumor progression by supplying the tumor cells with necessary nutrients. Inspired by this duality, Cunha et al. explored non-canonical roles of autophagy components...

Fourth CRI-CIMT-EATI-AACR International Cancer Immunotherapy Conference: Translating Science into Survival

October 10, 2018

Last week, the ACIR team attended the Fourth CRI-CIMT-EATI-AACR International Cancer Immunotherapy conference in New York. This week’s extensive special feature covers select talks from the conference, which are organized by topics below. Resistance Mechanisms and Combination StrategiesIdentifying Relevant Neoantigens and TCRsCAR T cells and Adoptive Cell TransferVaccinesMicrobiome Resistance Mechanisms and Combination Strategies...

NKILA: A matter of (T cell) life and (activation-induced cell) death

October 3, 2018

Activation-induced cell death (AICD) is part of the immune system’s important checks and balances, but as with multiple other regulatory pathways, tumors can co-opt T cell AICD as a mechanism of immune escape. To better understand how tumors induce AICD and which immune cells are targeted, Huang et al. performed an in-depth discovery...