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Immunotherapy in Solid Tumors

Immunotherapy has emerged as a major therapeutic modality in oncology. The number of immunotherapy drug approvals has been increasing, with numerous treatments in clinical and preclinical development. These therapeutics help the host immune system recognize cancer as foreign, promote the immune system, and relieve the inhibition that allows growth and spread of tumors.

 

Despite advancements in the treatment of hematological malignancies, solid tumors still represent a challenge. The majority of patients with cancer do not derive benefit from these treatments. Vascular abnormalities are a hallmark of most solid tumors and facilitate immune evasion. These underscore the importance of understanding basic tumor immunology for successful clinical translation in treating patients with cancer.

The recent clinical successes of immune checkpoint blockade therapies represent a turning point in immunotherapy. In addition, other immunotherapeutic treatments, such as vaccines, antibody-based targeted therapies, and adoptive therapies, are being investigated to treat solid tumors.

This entries collection intends to present insights into the novel approaches in immunotherapy and discuss existing and emerging immunotherapy technologies that hope to translate the promise of immunotherapy for the treatment of solid tumors into clinical reality.

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Topic review
Updated time: 23 Aug 2021
Submitted by: Agata Pietrzak
Definition: According to the international societies’ recommendations, the 2-deoxy-2-[18F]fluoro-D-glucose positron emission tomography/computed tomography ([18F]FDG PET/CT) technique should not be used as the method of choice in brain tumour diagnosis. Therefore, the brain region can be omitted during standard [18F]FDG PET/CT scanning. We performed comprehensive literature research and analysed results from 14,222 brain and torso [18F]FDG PET/CT studies collected in 2010–2020 to discuss whether the [18F]FDG PET/CT method may be useful in brain tumours detection.
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Topic review
Updated time: 09 Aug 2021
Submitted by: Chia-Lin Chen
Definition: Arginine is an amino acid critically involved in multiple cellular processes including the syntheses of nitric oxide and polyamine, and is a direct activator of mTOR, a nutrient sensing kinase strongly implicated in carcinogenesis. In this review, we will discuss arginine as a signaling metabolite, arginine’s role in cancer metabolism, arginine as an epigenetic regulator, arginine as an immunomodulator, and arginine as a therapeutic target. The different cell killing mechanisms associated with various cancer types will also be described.
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Topic review
Updated time: 22 Sep 2021
Submitted by: Qing Wang
Definition: Proteins encoded by mutant genes in cancers can be processed and presented on tumor cell surface by human leukocyte antigen (HLA) molecules, and such mutant peptides are called Neoantigens. Neoantigens are naturally existing tumor marker presented on cell surface. In clinical settings, the T-cell recognition of neoantigens is the foundation to cancer immunotherapeutics. In this article, we discussed the strategies of identifying neoantigens, followed by using phage display to create personalized cancer therapeutics -- a complete pipeline for personalized cancer treatment.
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Videos
Updated time: 13 Oct 2021
Topic review
Updated time: 29 Jun 2021
Submitted by: Guodong Fu
Definition: Thyroid cancer has the most rapidly increasing incidence rate among all major cancers, with a triple increase from 4.5 to 14.4 per 100,000 population during 1974–2013. It was estimated 52,890 new cases in the United States in 2020 and contributed to 0.36% of all cancer deaths. Most primary thyroid cancers are follicular cell-derived epithelial tumors, making up four main pathological carcinoma types: papillary thyroid carcinoma (PTC), follicular thyroid carcinoma (FTC), poorly differentiated thyroid carcinoma (PDTC) and anaplastic thyroid carcinoma (ATC).
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Topic review
Updated time: 13 Aug 2021
Submitted by: Milena Matuszczak
Definition: The high occurrence of bladder cancer and its tendency to recur combined with lifelong surveillance make the treatment of superficial bladder cancer one of the most expensive and time-consuming. Moreover, carcinoma in situ often leads to muscle invasion with an unfavourable prognosis. Currently, invasive methods including cystoscopy and cytology remain a gold standard. The aim is to find biomarkers with the best specificity and sensitivity, allowing the treatment plan to optimise and have potential applications in clinical practice. Such non-invasive methods can be measure in human body fluids, for example, urine or serum: Cytokeratin fragments (CYFRA 21.1), Excision Repair Cross-Complementation 1 (ERCC1), Tumour Protein p53 (Tp53), Fibroblast Growth Factor Receptor 3 (FGFR3), Tumor-Associated Trypsin Inhibitor (TATI).
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Topic review
Updated time: 08 Sep 2021
Submitted by: Nandini Dey
Definition: A tumor cell carrying characteristic genomic alteration(s) exists within its host’s microenvironment. The tempero-spatial interaction of tumor cells with its microenvironment is the deterministic factor for tumor growth, progression, resistance to therapy, and its outcome in clinics. This manuscript presents a systemic review of the role of CAF in endometrial cancers. Here we present the functional characteristics of CAF in the context of endometrial cancers. We review (1) the characteristics of CAF, (2) their evolution from being anti-tumor to pro-tumor, (3) their involvement in regulating growth and several metastasis-associated phenotypes of tumor cells, (4) their participation in perturbing immune defense and evading immune surveillance, and (5) their role in mediating drug resistance via tumor-CAF cross-talk with particular reference to endometrial cancers. We interrogate the functional characteristics of CAF in the light of its dialogue with tumor cells and other components of TME towards developing a CAF-based strategy for precision therapy to supplement tumor-based therapy. The purpose of the review is to present a new vision and initiate a thought process which recognizes the importance of CAF in a tumor, thereby resulting in a novel approach to the design and management of the disease in endometrial cancers.
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Topic review
Updated time: 29 Jun 2021
Submitted by: Brigida Anna Maiorano
Definition: Therapeutic cancer vaccines target TAAs alongside adjuvant molecules that can elicit specific antibodies or cytotoxic immune responses against cancer cells. There are different ways to present TAAs to the immune system. DNA and RNA encoding TAAs or whole peptides can be recognized and processed by the APCs; tumor cell lines express TAAs and can chemotactically attract APCs; viral vectors transfect APCs after being loaded with prespecified antigens; finally, DCs act as APCs and can be loaded with TAAs.
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Topic review
Updated time: 13 Sep 2021
Submitted by: Yilin Chiu
Definition: Urothelial carcinoma of the bladder (UCB) is among the top 10 most common cancers in the world, with an estimated 80,000 new cases and 17,000 deaths in the United States each year. Significant advances have been made in the management of bladder cancer since the 1990s. More accurate staging has been achieved with refined tissue imaging, and advances in surgical techniques have been combined with improved chemotherapy regimens. Even more, the 5-year survival rate for patients with non-muscle invasive UCB is over 90% and radical cystectomy is the treatment of choice for patients with surgically resectable disease without evidence of metastatic disease. However, patients with muscle-invasive bladder cancer or disseminated disease have a much lower survival rate, suggesting that the occurrence of metastasis has a significant impact on the prognosis of patients with bladder cancer. Considering the impact of metastatic disease on treatment options and patient prognosis, the importance of timely detection and prevention of metastasis in UCB cannot be overemphasized.
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Topic review
Updated time: 22 Jul 2021
Submitted by: Silvia Di Agostino
Definition: In human cancer, circular RNAs (circRNAs) were implicated in the control of oncogenic activities such as tumor cell proliferation, epithelial-mesenchymal transition, invasion, metastasis and chemoresistance. The most widely described mechanism of action of circRNAs is their ability to act as competing endogenous RNAs (ceRNAs) for miRNAs, lncRNAs and mRNAs, thus impacting along their axis, despite the fact that a variety of additional mechanisms of action are emerging, representing an open and expanding field of study.
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