About My Health Careers Internship MedBlogs Contact us

New Biomarkers of Blood Identified to Predict Cancer Immunotherapy Outcome

by Preethi Sivaswaamy Mohana on January 9, 2018 at 5:11 PM
Font : A-A+

New Biomarkers of Blood Identified to Predict Cancer Immunotherapy Outcome

A novel method has been identified to find out which patients are likely to respond positively to immunotherapy. Immunotherapy can fight effectively against melanoma and lung cancer. It makes targeted use of normal immune system functioning with regular examination of body's tissue for pathogens and damages. Specific inhibitors can be used to activate immune cells and identify cancer cells as foreign bodies. Thus eliminating the metastatic cancer cells. Immunotherapy can be possibly used to control cancer cells in up to 50 percent of patients, in some cases even curing them altogether says the research team at University of Zurich. The findings in the study are published in the journal of Nature Medicine.

Not all respond to immunotherapy


However, around half of cancer patients do not respond to immunotherapy, but still have to put up with its side effects. Researchers from the University of Zurich and the University Hospital Zurich were able to identify biomarkers in the blood that indicate whether the therapy is highly likely to be effective even before treatment is commenced.

"The blood counts of patients should be analyzed for these biomarkers when making a decision about immunotherapy. This will dramatically increase the share of patients who will benefit from this type of therapy," says Professor Burkhard Becher from the Institute of Experimental Immunology at UZH. "At the same time, it makes it possible to directly move on to different methods in cases where immunotherapy won't work - without losing valuable time."

High-dimensional cell analysis

The scientists worked hand in hand with the Department of Dermatology of the University Hospital Zurich to examine biomarkers in 40 blood samples of 20 patients, both before and 12 weeks after immunotherapy. For this, they used the high-dimensional "cytometry by time of flight" (Cy-TOF) cell analysis method, which analyzes cells for up to 50 different proteins one cell at a time. The researchers were thus able to differentiate every single cell and document its activation status. Even nuanced differences between the patient samples were recorded in detail.

Recognizing molecular patterns

After analyzing the cells, the researchers examined the data together with employees of the Swiss Institute of Bioinformatics at UZH in terms of molecular patterns that could predict therapeutic success. "Even before the start of a therapy, we observed a subtle and weak immune response in the blood, and identified this molecular pattern as the immune cells CD14+CD16−HLA-DRhi," says Burkhard Becher. For the finding to be easily verifiable, the biomarkers should be easily detectable; indeed, the blood count was able to be validated using conventional methods in a second, independent cohort of more than 30 people.

Dawning of precision medicine

"Together with comprehensive, precisely structured bio banking, this study represents a major step towards precision medicine," says Professor Mitch Levesque of the Department of Dermatology at the University Hospital Zurich. Before they can be used clinically, the insights gained must now be applied in independent studies with higher patient numbers. The method using biobanking, high-dimensional cytometry, and computer-aided pattern recognition should also be useful in clinical decision support and developing new therapeutic approaches when it comes to other clinical pictures.

Source: Eurekalert

News A-Z
News Category
What's New on Medindia
Is COVID-19 Vaccination during Pregnancy Safe?
Sensory Processing Disorder (SPD)
View all

Medindia Newsletters Subscribe to our Free Newsletters!
Terms & Conditions and Privacy Policy.

More News on:
Thalassemia Cancer and Homeopathy Immunisation Cancer Facts Cancer Tattoos A Body Art Dealing with Pollen Allergy Blood in Stools - Symptom Evaluation Bombay Blood Group Common Lifestyle Habits that Cause Diseases 

Recommended Reading
Cancer Immunotherapy
Cancer immunotherapy is a new advancement in cancer treatment that uses certain components of a ......
Targeting Immune Cells That Aid Tumor Growth May Enhance Tumor Response To Immunotherapy
Finding ways to overcome certain immune cells that actually help tumor growth will be crucial to ......
Immunotherapy for Rare Pregnancy Cancer Leads to Remission in Patients
Promising immunotherapy treatment for a rare pregnancy related cancer caused remission in nearly a ....
Potential Immunotherapy Targets can be Identified by a New Technique
The technique can be used to identify the potential antigens which are relevant to other ......
Blood in Stools - Symptom Evaluation
Blood in stools results from bleeding that arises from any part of the digestive tract. Causes of bl...
Bombay Blood Group
Bombay blood group is a rare blood type in which the people have an H antigen deficiency. They can r...
Common Lifestyle Habits that Cause Diseases
Cigarette smoking, unhealthy diets, overuse of alcohol, and physical inactivity are some of the most...
Dealing with Pollen Allergy
The plants around you that give you sniffles in your nose at specific time of the year are the sourc...
Tattoos A Body Art
Tattoos are a rage among college students who sport it for the ‘cool dude’ or ‘cool babe’ look...
Thalassemia is an inherited blood disorder passed on through parental genes causing the body to prod...

Disclaimer - All information and content on this site are for information and educational purposes only. The information should not be used for either diagnosis or treatment or both for any health related problem or disease. Always seek the advice of a qualified physician for medical diagnosis and treatment. Full Disclaimer

© All Rights Reserved 1997 - 2021

This site uses cookies to deliver our services. By using our site, you acknowledge that you have read and understand our Cookie Policy, Privacy Policy, and our Terms of Use