Roswell Park is one of very few institutions in the United States equipped to offer clinical trials of a full range of immunotherapies. How do these treatments work, and what new immunotherapy clinical trials are underway or close to being launched?
Dr. Gurkamal Chatta and his colleagues are conducting a phase I clinical trial of an immunotherapy for men with metastatic prostate cancer that has progressed in spite of standard treatment. “We are targeting an area of need where there are really no other effective therapies.”
“Initially, ovarian cancer, melanoma, and some sarcomas are the three main targets,” says Dr. Koya, “but the clinical trial is open for patients with other cancers who meet the eligibility requirements."
Collected last week from a patient with late-stage ovarian cancer, these are not ordinary T cells; they have been altered and multiplied in the hope that when they are given back to her, they will launch a devastating attack on her cancer cells.
I am the Vice Chair for Translational Research in the Department of Medicine and the Director of Cancer Vaccine and Dendritic Cell Therapies in the Center for Immunotherapy. My goal is to fix cancer-related immune dysfunction and teach our bodies to fight cancer.
In December, the Parker Institute for Cancer Immunotherapy and the Cancer Research Institute (CRI) announced a major collaboration focused on an emerging area of cancer research: neoantigens. These small proteins on the surface of cancer cells arise from mutations often unique to a tumor, making personalized immunotherapies like cancer vaccines a possibility.
Rowell Park is exploding in growth, in excitement; we have so many great things to look forward to. One of my visions for the future is that our immunotherapy research and treatments will make us the go-to place for patients that wish to receive innovative cancer therapies.