Immunotherapy for Stomach Cancer


Anchor lead:
Immunotherapy may be used for cancers of the stomach, Elizabeth Tracey reports

Stomach or gastric cancer is often associated with a poor
prognosis, frequently because the disease is advanced at the time of diagnosis.
One drug in the class of immunotherapy drugs is now being used to treat the
disease. That’s according to Katie Bever, an expert in immunology and
gastrointestinal cancers at Johns Hopkins.

Bever: In gastric cancer we have one drug currently which is
approved it’s called pembrolizamab, it’s available to patients with metastatic
disease who either have a tumor that overexpresses PDL1, which is that signal
that we’re blocking or that have a defect in their tumor called mismatch repair
or microsatellite instability. For those patients immunotherapy may be a good option
for treatment. A lot of our research is focused on how to get immunotherapy
into the remainder of patients and how to make it work better.  :32

Bever is hopeful that as more is learned about the genetics
of stomach cancers and new agents are developed more patients will benefit from
immunotherapy. At Johns Hopkins, I’m Elizabeth Tracey.