Society for Immunotherapy of Cancer (SITC)-Led Study Demonstrating Prognostic Power of “Immunoscore” Published in The Lancet

May 10, 2018

MILWAUKEE – An international consortium led by the Society for Immunotherapy of Cancer (SITC) has published the results of a ground-breaking study that demonstrates the immune system’s important role in colon cancer prognosis.

Published in The Lancet, “International validation of the consensus Immunoscore for the classification of colon cancer: a prognostic and accuracy study” features data from more than 3,500 patients from 13 countries and reinforces earlier research suggesting the activity in a patient’s immune system helps control cancer progression. Specifically, the study shows that the presence of immune cells within a cancerous tumor, quantified as a patient’s “Immunoscore,” is a significant indicator of a patient’s prognosis.

The findings of this large-scale study showed that stage I-III colon cancer patients’ Immunoscores are positively correlated with survival as well as the “time to recurrence” of cancer. That is, patients with higher Immunoscores had improved overall survival and demonstrated a significantly longer time to recurrence than patients with lower Immunoscores. This suggests patients with a higher Immunoscore are more likely to benefit from most forms of therapy. Additionally, this study provides a critical, standardized framework to measure the activity of a patient’s immune system inside cancer, an important indicator of response to immunotherapy.

“This manuscript comes out of the SITC-led Immunoscore Validation Project and addresses a key hurdle in the field of cancer immunotherapy: characterizing tumor immunity as a valid prognostic indicator,” said Bernard A. Fox, PhD, Immunoscore Validation Project Steering Committee Chair and Past SITC President. “This collaborative effort among experts across the globe supports the development of tumor classification and staging systems that take immune system activity into account, representing a critical advancement in this field.”

Leading this landmark study is one example of SITC’s collaborative approach to support global scientific exchange and data sharing in the immunotherapy field.

“The scale and impact of this study were possible because immunotherapy leaders from across the world worked together and shared their data to pool results,” said Lisa H. Butterfield, PhD, SITC President. “SITC looks forward to leading future collaborations for sample and data sharing projects that will address hurdles and advance the field.”

Read more about the SITC-led Immunoscore Validation Project at the society’s official website, SITC Cancer Immunotherapy CONNECT.

About SITC
Established in 1984, the Society for Immunotherapy of Cancer (SITC) is a non-profit organization of medical professionals dedicated to improving cancer patient outcomes by advancing the development, science and application of cancer immunotherapy and tumor immunology. SITC is comprised of influential basic and translational scientists, practitioners, health care professionals, government leaders and industry professionals around the globe. Through educational initiatives that foster scientific exchange and collaboration among leaders in the field, SITC aims to one day make the word “cure” a reality for cancer patients everywhere. Learn more about SITC, our educational offerings and other resources at and follow us on Twitter, LinkedIn, Facebook and YouTube.



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