June 12, 2019 – Why Response?



Anchor lead: How can we explain why some people respond to cancer treatments and others don’t? Elizabeth Tracey reports

Cancer treatments known as immune checkpoint inhibitors have produced amazing results in about half of people in whom they’re used. Now research from Johns Hopkins may help explain why the other half doesn’t respond by looking more closely at DNA. William Nelson, director of the Kimmel Cancer Center, describes the results.

Nelson: The propensity to respond was driven as much by the insertions and deletions as it was by the mutations. Which may be an explanation for why only half the people respond particularly well, with DNA mismatch deficiency to immune checkpoint inhibitors.  :15

Nelson says this is important clinically.

Nelson: It gives you general logic where you can say we can better refine, with testing, who is likely to benefit extraordinarily from immune checkpoint inhibitors and who is not, so that we can spend our time thinking about how to treat them better.  :15

At Johns Hopkins, I’m Elizabeth Tracey.