Immunotherapy is maintaining its momentum in clinical development programs, with explorations under way in many tumor types, including breast and lung cancers previously considered poor candidates for such modalities.
> See Table 1. Novel Active Immunotherapies in Late-Stage Development
In the past, breast tumors typically were not considered immunogenic, but research advances indicate the opposite. Mary L. Disis [chief co-investigator of the Cancer Immunotherapy Trials Network] believes that the immune system can be stimulated not only to treat breast cancer but also to prevent relapse.
Disis also has been working on a vaccine that targets HER2/neu, the protein overexpressed in at least 25% of all breast cancers.
Thomas F. Gajewski [president of the Society for Immunotherapy of Cancer] has led and participated in clinical investigations of several immunotherapy strategies involving melanoma.
Although many companies are developing immunotherapies, MIchael D Becker [financial analyst, investor, and biotechnology entrepreneur on oncology drug development] said access to investment capital remains dicey for smaller biopharmaceutical companies
Leonard G. Gomella, MD, has conducted extensive research into the use of immunotherapy in patients with prostate cancer.
Robert L. Kirkman, MD, formerly chief of the Division of Transplantation at Brigham and Women’s Hospital in Boston, Massachusetts, has been a biopharmaceutical executive since the late 1990s. In 2006, he took the helm of Oncothyreon
Oncothyreon has in its portfolio a vaccine for non-small cell lung cancer, a difficult disease state for immune-based therapies. <
Via Dr. Stefan Gruenwald