Thursday, November 20, 2014

Where do you see the immune checkpoints and immune therapies field going?

We recently had a chance to sit down with a few of the Antibody Engineering and Therapeutics speakers to get an inside look into what they're working on and insights into their work.  We continue our interview series off with Omid Hamid, MD, Chief of Research, Immuno-Oncology at theThe Angeles Clinic and Research Institute.

Today's question for Dr. Hamid is:
Where do you see the immune checkpoints and immune therapies field going?

Dr. Hamid: Well, the future of this field is bright. To begin with, this field will expandto multiple solid tumors and multiple indications as I’ve just alluded to. As we moveforward, immune checkpoints and immune therapies will start to proceed in the normal fashion that traditional chemotherapy did. That is, if we could get good response and good benefit as a single agent, can we have combinatorial therapy showing even better benefits for our patients while being able to mitigate toxicity? 
At ASCO 2014, Mario Sznol updated the recent data of Ipilimumab and Nivolumab in combination for malignant metastatic melanoma. This was data initially presented by Dr. Jedd Wolchuck in The New England Journal of Medicine in 2013. The updates are just as promising. Although there was a bump in toxicity, response rates may have been greater. There is an indication that possibly there can be improvement in duration of response. Now, this has to be born out in randomized studies. But, as we speak today, a major Phase III randomized trial – double blinded – looking at the combination vs. each single agent alone, and blinded, has accrued and we’re awaiting that data. 
But it’s not just for melanoma anymore. It’s for multiple solid tumors. Combinatorial trials of immune check inhibitions are now accruing for lung cancer, head and neck cancer and other solid tumors. In addition, it’s not just checkpoint inhibition alone. Clinical trials are looking at PD-1 inhibition with other forms of immune manipulation. Most importantly, IDO inhibitors and oncolytic therapies. By themselves, these therapies are promising and, hopefully, in combination the promise can be improved and we can move forward in that way.

Dr. Hamid will be presenting The Promise of PD1 Checkpoint Inhibition for Multiple Solid Tumors on Wednesday, December 10 at the Antibody Engineering and Therapeutics event. For more information on his session and the rest of the program, download the agenda. As a reader of this blog, when you register to join us and mention code XD14172BLOGJP, you can save 20% off the standard rate.

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