Weekly Digests



High IL-8 correlates with reduced response to PD-1/PD-L1 checkpoint blockade

May 27, 2020

When it comes to improving cancer immunotherapy, finding strong biomarkers and finding novel targets are both key goals. In two papers recently published back-to-back in Nature Medicine, Yuen and Liu et al. and Schalper and Carleton et al. identify IL-8 (also known as CXCL8) both as a predictive biomarker of reduced clinical benefit...

Exhausted T cells come in many flavors

May 20, 2020

Aiming to improve clinical response to immunotherapy by better understanding the mechanisms behind the development of the heterogeneous population of exhausted CD8+ T cells (Tex), Beltra et al. extensively analyzed Tex cells in a chronic infection setting. The researchers identified four subsets with distinct transcriptional, epigenetic, and phenotypic features, as well as elucidated...

MDSCs play metabolic freeze tag with T cells

May 13, 2020

Suppressive myeloid cells, namely myeloid-derived suppressor cells (MDSCs), are known to appear in situations of chronic inflammation and cancer, where they suppress cytotoxic T cell responses. However, without an existing definitive marker for this immune subset, MDSCs can be difficult to study and target. In research recently published in Nature Immunology, Baumann et...

Engineering a safer, more potent IL-2

May 6, 2020

Recombinant human interleukin-2 (rhIL-2, aldesleukin) was approved decades ago for the treatment of cancer, and it induces long-lasting, sometimes complete responses in a subset of patients with metastatic melanoma or metastatic renal cell carcinoma. However, due to the risk of capillary leak syndrome and associated toxicities, the use of rhIL-2 treatment has been...

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