Letter from the Editor
Dear JITC Readers,
In the June edition of the JITC Digest, I would like to draw special attention to the following articles. First, “Carboplatin/paclitaxel, E7-vaccination and intravaginal CpG as tri-therapy towards efficient regression of genital HPV16 tumors” by Sonia Domingos-Pereira et al. investigates the effects of systemic administration of a chemotherapy doublet in combination with HPV16-E7 synthetic long peptide (E7LP) vaccination, followed by intravaginal immunostimulation in the genital orthotopic TC-1 mouse model. Results from this study suggest that combining novel vaccine formulations with local immunostimulation and standard-of-care chemotherapy have the potential to benefit patients with HPV-associated cancer.
Next, the research article “Selectively hampered activation of lymph node-resident dendritic cells precedes profound T cell suppression and metastatic spread in the breast cancer sentinel lymph node,” by Kim M. van Pul et al. describes the immune status of breast draining lymph nodes (LN) in a quantitative and functional manner using multi-parameter flow cytometry and ex-vivo cultures, and compares it with that of breast-draining axillary LN from healthy donors. This study provides new insights into the mechanisms underlying loco-regional immune suppression in breast cancer and how this relates to clinical parameters and suggests that LN-resident-conventional dendritic cells are potential therapeutic targets.
Furthermore, the article, “Anti-pancreatic tumor efficacy of a Listeria-based, Annexin A2-targeting immunotherapy in combination with anti-PD-1 antibodies,” by Victoria M. Kim et al. shows for the first time, that a Listeria vaccine-based immunotherapy was able to induce a tumor antigen-specific T cell response within the tumor microenvironment of a “cold” tumor such as PDAC and further sensitizes the tumor to checkpoint inhibitor therapy. This combination immunotherapy led to objective tumor responses and survival benefit in mice with spontaneously developed PDAC tumors, supporting Lm-ANXA2 as a therapeutic agent in combination with anti-PD-1 antibody for PDAC treatment.
“Neurologic toxicity associated with immune checkpoint inhibitors: a pharmacovigilance study,” by Douglas B. Johnson et al. leverages Vigibase, the World Health Organization pharmacovigilance database, to further define neurologic toxicities in the largest characterization of neurologic immune-related adverse events (irAEs) associated with ICIs. Results of this analysis pinpointed several categories of neurologic toxicities strongly associated with CNS inflammation or peripheral neuromuscular autoimmune disorders of which clinicians should be aware of in administering checkpoint blockade.
Finally, Hyun Gul Yang et al.’s article, “Discovery of a novel natural killer cell line with distinct immunostimulatory and proliferative potential as an alternative platform for cancer immunotherapy,” presents a novel NK cell line, NK101, from a patient with extra-nodal NK/T cell lymphoma and an assessment of its phenotypic, genomic and functional characteristics, with results suggestive of its therapeutic application as a CAR T-alternative anti-cancer cellular platform with improved efficacy and superior scalability.
With best regards,
Pedro J. Romero, MD
Editor-in-Chief, Journal for ImmunoTherapy of Cancer