By Ashley Herrick, Executive Director, Oncology Program Strategy, Premier Research
In recent years, immunotherapy has led to substantial advances in cancer therapy. In particular, the immune checkpoint inhibitors — PD-1/PD-L1 and CTLA-4 inhibitors — have revolutionized treatment for certain hematologic malignancies and solid tumors. The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has approved six immunotherapies across 19 cancer types and two tissue-agnostic conditions.
But widespread use of immune checkpoint therapy to treat cancers is hampered by unpredictable response rates and immune-related adverse events. To address these challenges, researchers are increasingly looking to combination therapies as a strategy for improving response and overcoming resistance. This post provides an introduction to cancer immunotherapy, exploring its immunological basis and the fundamental principles guiding the development of new treatments.