Cancer Immunotherapy and Personalized Medicine: Emerging Technologies and Biomarker-Based Approaches.

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Cancer Immunotherapy and Personalized Medicine: Emerging Technologies and Biomarker-Based Approaches.

J Mol Biomark Diagn. 2017 Sep;8(5):

Authors: Maciejko L, Smalley M, Goldman A

Purpose of review: The vision and strategy for the 21st century treatment of cancer calls for a personalized approach in which therapy selection is designed for each individual patient. While genomics has led the field of personalized cancer medicine over the past several decades by connecting patient-specific DNA mutations with kinase-targeted drugs, the recent discovery that tumors evade immune surveillance has created unique challenges to personalize cancer immunotherapy. In this mini-review we will discuss how personalized medicine has evolved recently to accommodate the emerging era of cancer immunotherapy. Moreover, we will discuss novel platform technologies that have been engineered to address some of the persisting limitations.
Recent finding: Beginning with early evidence in personalized medicine, we discuss how biomarker-driven approaches to predict clinical success have evolved to account for the heterogeneous tumor ecosystem. In the emerging field of cancer immunotherapy, this challenge requires the use of a novel set of tools, distinct from the classic approach of next-generation genomic sequencing-based strategies. We will introduce new techniques that seek to tailor immunotherapy by re-programming patient-autologous T-cells, and new technologies that are emerging to predict clinical efficacy by mapping infiltration of lymphocytes, and harnessing fully humanized platforms that reconstruct and interrogate immune checkpoint blockade, ex-vivo.
Summary: While cancer immunotherapy is now leading to durable outcomes in difficult-to-treat cancers, success is highly variable. Developing novel approaches to study cancer immunotherapy, personalize treatment to each patient, and achieve greater outcomes is penultimate to developing sustainable cures in the future. Numerous techniques are now emerging to help guide treatment decisions, which go beyond simple biomarker-driven strategies, and are now we are seeking to interrogate the entirety of the dynamic tumor ecosystem.

PMID: 29285416 [PubMed]

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