Annual Meeting • Sessions

Session 100: Hematologic Malignancies

Thursday, Nov. 7. 2019
1:00 – 5:00 p.m.

Session 200: Update Session

Friday, Nov. 8. 2019
8:05 – 8:35 a.m.

Session 201: Richard V. Smalley, MD Memorial Lectureship

Friday, Nov. 8, 2019
8:35 – 9:25 a.m.

Session 202: Autoimmunity, Toxicity and Cancer Immunotherapy

Friday, Nov. 8, 2019
9:25 a.m. – 12 p.m.

Session 203: Late-Breaking Abstract Session

Friday, Nov. 8, 2019
12 – 12:30 p.m.

Session 204: Immune Checkpoints: New Targets and Updates on Combinations

Immune checkpoint blockade, specifically CTLA-4 and PD-1, is by far one of the most effective approaches to activating therapeutic antitumor immunity. Monoclonal antibodies designed to reverse the effects of this major mechanism of immune resistance have created a revolution in cancer treatment and led to significant improvement in the survival of patients with multiple types of cancers. Deepening understanding of cancer biology and host immunology over the past few years has led to the identification of a long list of positive and negative costimulatory receptors that regulate T cell activation. These surface receptors are typically members of either the B7 or TNF receptor superfamilies where agonistic monoclonal antibodies can be utilized to enhance T cell activation. Ongoing development carries great promise and one focus is the pursuit of combinations that involve novel immune checkpoint modulators, cytokines, chemotherapy and radiation therapy. Among the most advanced experimental combinations in development at this time involve a PD-1 blockade backbone and LAG3 inhibition or PD-1 blockade with NKTR-214 and both will be reviewed during this session. Further, this session will review efforts in investigating promising novel targets, namely TIM-3 and TIGIT.

Friday, Nov. 8, 2019
2 – 4:20 p.m.

Concurrent Session 205: Biology of T cells

Friday, Nov. 8, 2019
4:50 – 6:15 p.m.

Concurrent Session 206: High Impact Clinical Trials

Friday, Nov. 8, 2019
4:50 – 6:15 p.m.

Concurrent Session 207: Harnessing Antigen-Presenting Cells to Boost Anti-Tumor Immunity

Immune systems, in cancer and beyond, function as a cooperativity amongst innate and adaptive arms. Checkpoint Blockade has shown special powers in some, but not all tumors. The next frontier in understanding and targeting immune systems in cancer is Myeloid tuning. This session will focus upon the biology and targeting of this biology.

Friday, Nov. 8, 2019
4:50 – 6:15 p.m.

Concurrent Session 208: Tumor cell Atlas Efforts — Big Data

Friday, Nov. 8, 2019
4:50 – 6:15 p.m.

Concurrent Session 209: Virus Driven Cancers

Approximately 20% of the world’s cancers are caused by viruses, of which seven have been identified. The role of cancer immunotherapy in this set of virus-driven cancers is therefore of particular interest from an etiologic, diagnostic and therapeutic standpoint. Understanding mechanisms of virus-associated immune escape is crucial to designing specific interventions to stimulate innate and adaptive immunity, including immune checkpoint strategies, danger signals through TLR/NLR, and adoptive cellular therapy-based approaches. 

This session will address disease sites and organs in which both virus-driven and environmental/carcinogen-induced subsets exist, and these will be discussed and compared based on immune escape mechanisms and available preclinical and clinical data for immunotherapeutic response. In addition, this session will address selected viruses that can induce cancer in a variety of different organs and locations. Likewise, similarities and lessons for design of immunotherapies will be addressed with basic and translational science, as well as any available clinical trial data. 

Friday, Nov. 8, 2019
4:50 – 6:15 p.m.

Session 300: Update Session/Policy Session

Saturday, Nov. 9, 2019
7:55 – 8:25 a.m.

Session 301: Update Session

Saturday, Nov. 9, 2019
8:25 – 8:55 a.m.

Session 302: Keynote Address

Saturday, Nov. 9, 2019
8:55 – 9:45 a.m.

Session 303: Imaging Technologies

Saturday, Nov. 9, 2019
9:45 – 11:50 a.m.

Session 304: Late-Breaking Abstract Session

Saturday, Nov. 9, 2019
11:50 a.m. – 12:20 p.m.

Session 305: Sparkathon Update

The Society for Immunotherapy of Cancer (SITC) Sparkathon program brings together investigators early in their careers with various backgrounds, degrees and professional experiences to collaboratively address obstacles the field of cancer immunotherapy faces.

SITC selected a group of 28 emerging leaders (known as the SITC Sparkathon Class of 2018) in the fields of cancer immunotherapy, physical sciences, systems biology and statistics for the 2018 SITC Sparkathon.

Selected participants met Sept. 12–14, 2018, in Chicago, Ill., for a two-and-a-half-day retreat where they worked together to develop innovative solutions to hurdles the field of cancer immunotherapy faces.

During the retreat, participants worked alongside business experts to develop project proposals. A panel of SITC leaders awarded the most promising project $200,000 to implement the proposed project. The full 2018 class (all participants) will then implement the project during the following 12 months, culminating in a presentation at the society’s 34th Annual Meeting, Nov. 6–10, 2019Saturday,

Nov. 9, 2019
12:20 – 12:35 p.m.

Session 306: Presidential Session

Saturday, Nov. 9, 2019
2:05 – 3:30 p.m.

Concurrent Session 307: Machine Learning Approaches and Applications 

Saturday, Nov. 9, 2019
3:45 – 5 p.m.

Concurrent Session 308: Clinical Management

Saturday, Nov. 9, 2019
3:45 – 5 p.m.

Concurrent Session 309: Single Agent Phase 1 Clinical Trials

Saturday, Nov. 9, 2019
3:45 – 5 p.m.

Concurrent Session 310: Combination Phase 1-2 Clinical Trials

Saturday, Nov. 9, 2019
5:15 – 6:30 p.m.

Concurrent Session 311: A Tale of Two Brain Tumors: Primary versus Metastatic CNS Tumors

Recent reports from initial clinical studies suggest striking differences of response to checkpoint blockade therapy in primary vs. metastatic brain cancer patients. Impressively, combination therapy using ipilimumab + nivolumab for metastatic melanoma in the brain showed 57% overall intracranial benefit rate (Tawbi HA et al. NEJM 2018), while early data shows minimal benefit of this combination in recurrent glioblastoma. Emerging data also suggests a role for neoadjuvant PD-1 blockade in glioblastoma. Do these observations suggest that the brain as an anatomical site does not necessarily limit anti-tumor immune responses? – Do the different response rates rather suggest that major challenges lie in the intrinsic nature of tumor types? – In this session, we will discuss these key questions to gain greater insight for the development of effective and safe immunotherapy strategies for these highly challenging tumors. 

Saturday, Nov. 9, 2019
5:15 – 6:30 p.m.

Concurrent Session 312: NK Cells: From Basic Science to Clinical Application

Saturday, Nov. 9, 2019
5:15 – 6:30 p.m.

Concurrent Session 313: Immunotherapy Advances in Skin Cancer

Advanced skin cancers, including both melanoma and non-melanoma skin cancers (NMSC), had historically been associated with dismal outcomes, until the recent advances in systemic therapy. Immunotherapy using immune checkpoint inhibitors (ICI) has led to dramatic improvement in survival and has even led to durable complete remissions in a subset of patients with distant metastatic disease. The success in metastatic setting is percolating to earlier stages with promising outcomes in the adjuvant arena in patients with high-risk of recurrence. Unfortunately, a substantial proportion of patients do not derive benefit from immunotherapy and there is a strong unmet need for finding effective immunotherapy options in patients without durable responses to ICIs.

In this session, we review the progress in immunotherapy of melanoma, in both metastatic as well as adjuvant settings. We also review the emerging immunotherapy options in ICI-refractory patients. Lastly, we review the emerging success of immunotherapy in treatment of NMSC, including Merkel cell carcinoma, Squamous cell carcinoma and Basal cell carcinomas.

Saturday, Nov. 9, 2019
5:15 – 6:30 p.m.

Concurrent Session 314: Tumor and Stromal Cell Biology

Saturday, Nov. 9, 2019
5:15 – 6:30 p.m.

Session 400: Innovations in Cellular Therapy for Therapeutically Targeting Advanced Malignancies

The remarkable clinical success of the adoptive transfer of CAR T-cells for treating advanced hematological malignancies sparks hope that analogous results may be obtainable for therapeutically targeting solid tumors. However, there remains several obstacles that will need to be overcome to improve efficacy while maintaining safety of cellular therapies. In hematological malignancies, CAR-T cells are not effective in treating all patients, and can cause significant on-target, off-tumor toxicity. Such therapies are also highly personalized, which impact variability in efficacy and overall manufacturing expense. Lastly, clinical responses are not always not durable and treating solid tumors with cell therapies pose additional challenges due to the immunosuppressive tumor microenvironment. Indeed, as will be discussed, proof-of-principle studies in very few patients with T cells that express T cell receptors specific to neoepitopes may have significant potential benefit for treating solid tumors. A deeper understanding of the factors that impact success and failure of adoptive cell based therapies will inform innovative strategies for the benefit of more patients.

This session strives to integrate cutting-edge and promising immune cell engineering approaches for therapeutically targeting solid and liquid cancers, with an emphasis on clinical trials. Presentations by leading physician-scientists and researchers in the fields of the universal donor cells, NK cells, CAR-T cells, and personalized neoepitope-specific T cells will provide a state of the art of the field of cell therapy for immunologically targeting cancer. 

Sunday, Nov. 10, 2019
8:05 – 10:15 a.m.

Session 401: Update Session

Sunday, Nov. 10, 2019
10:30 – 10:45 a.m.

Session 402: Hot Topic Symposium

Sunday, Nov. 10, 2019
10:45 a.m. – 12:15 p.m.

Schedule At-a-Glance