The use of immune checkpoint inhibitors (ICIs) is rapidly expanding to the treatment of many cancer types, both in the metastatic setting and as an adjuvant to other therapies. Clinical trials using ICIs have largely excluded patients with preexisting autoimmune diseases due to concerns for increased toxicity. However, emerging evidence shows that ICIs may be considered in some patients with autoimmunity. This review discusses the commonalities between clinical autoimmune diseases and ICI-induced immunotherapy-related adverse events, and summarizes the existing case series that describes patients with solid tumors who have a preexisting autoimmune disease. This review also discusses which patients with autoimmunity could be considered reasonable candidates for ICI therapy.
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Laura C. Kennedy, Shailender Bhatia, John A. Thompson and Petros Grivas
Olumide Gbolahan, Neda Hashemi-Sadraei and Bert O’Neil
Management of advanced intrahepatic cholangiocarcinoma (iCCA) is challenging and overall survival is poor. Progress in the development of new therapeutic options for metastatic cholangiocarcinoma (CCA) has been slow; hence, to date, there are no approved second-line agents in this setting. Although the development of immune checkpoint inhibitors has significantly improved overall survival in a variety of malignancies, there has not been a clinically important impact in CCA. This report presents a 66-year-old patient with chemotherapy-refractory iCCA who experienced a prolonged response to immunotherapy. Tumor genome profiling revealed a high tumor mutation burden of 17 mutations per megabase in the absence of microsatellite instability. He was started on immunotherapy with nivolumab and has experienced an ongoing response for 16 months without clinical symptoms and only minimal radiologic disease.
Megan C. Roberts, Allison W. Kurian and Valentina I. Petkov
Background: This study assessed uptake of the Oncotype DX 21-gene assay over time and characterized which sociodemographic and clinical factors are associated with test uptake among women with lymph node−positive (LN+), hormone receptor−positive, HER2-negative breast cancer. Methods: Invasive breast cancer cases diagnosed in 2010 through 2013 were included from a SEER database linked to 21-gene assay results performed at Genomic Health’s Clinical Laboratory. Factors associated with 21-gene assay uptake were identified using a multivariable logistic regression model. Results: Uptake of the 21-gene assay increased over time and differed by race, socioeconomic status (SES), and age. In the multivariable model, when clinical and SES variables were controlled for, racial differences in test uptake were no longer observed. Private insurance status was associated with higher odds of 21-gene assay uptake (Medicaid vs private insurance: adjusted odds ratio, 0.86; P=.02), and high area-level SES was associated with an increased odds of uptake (quintile 5 vs 1: adjusted odds ratio, 1.6; P<.001). Demographic factors such as age and marital status influenced test uptake, and use varied greatly by geographic region. Uptake of the 21-gene assay increased over time and preceded the assay’s inclusion in the NCCN Guidelines for LN+ breast cancer. Differences in uptake by race, SES, and age have persisted over time. However, when clinical and SES variables were controlled for, racial differences in assay uptake were no longer observed. Socioeconomic variables, such as health insurance type and area-level SES, were associated with assay uptake. Conclusions: Future research should continue to document practice patterns related to the 21-gene assay. Given variation in testing associated with area-level SES, insurance coverage, and geographic region, interventions to understand and reduce differential uptake are needed to ensure equitable access to this genomic test.
Mohammad Abu Zaid, Paul C. Dinh Jr, Patrick O. Monahan, Chunkit Fung, Omar El-Charif, Darren R. Feldman, Robert J. Hamilton, David J. Vaughn, Clair J. Beard, Ryan Cook, Sandra Althouse, Shirin Ardeshir-Rouhani-Fard, Howard D. Sesso, Robert Huddart, Taisei Mushiroda, Michiaki Kubo, M. Eileen Dolan, Lawrence H. Einhorn, Sophie D. Fossa, Lois B. Travis and for the Platinum Study Group
Background: This study examined the prevalence of hypogonadism, its clinical and genetic risk factors, and its relationship to adverse health outcomes (AHOs) in North American testicular cancer survivors (TCS) after modern platinum-based chemotherapy. Patients and Methods: Eligible TCS were <55 years of age at diagnosis and treated with first-line platinum-based chemotherapy. Participants underwent physical examinations and completed questionnaires regarding 15 AHOs and health behaviors. Hypogonadism was defined as serum testosterone levels ≤3.0 ng/mL or use of testosterone replacement therapy. We investigated the role of 2 single nucleotide polymorphisms (rs6258 and rs12150660) in the sex hormone–binding globulin (SHBG) locus implicated in increased hypogonadism risk in the general population. Results: Of 491 TCS (median age at assessment, 38.2 years; range, 18.7–68.4 years), 38.5% had hypogonadism. Multivariable binary logistic regression analysis identified hypogonadism risk factors, including age at clinical evaluation (odds ratio [OR], 1.42 per 10-year increase; P= .006) and body mass index of 25 to <30 kg/m2 (OR, 2.08; P= .011) or ≥30 kg/m2 (OR, 2.36; P= .005) compared with <25 kg/m2. TCS with ≥2 risk alleles for the SHBG SNPs had a marginally significant increased hypogonadism risk (OR, 1.45; P= .09). Vigorous-intensity physical activity appeared protective (OR, 0.66; P= .07). Type of cisplatin-based chemotherapy regimen and socioeconomic factors did not correlate with hypogonadism. Compared with TCS without hypogonadism, those with hypogonadism were more likely to report ≥2 AHOs (65% vs 51%; P= .003), to take medications for hypercholesterolemia (20.1% vs 6.0%; P<.001) or hypertension (18.5% vs 10.6%; P= .013), and to report erectile dysfunction (19.6% vs 11.9%; P= .018) or peripheral neuropathy (30.7% vs 22.5%; P= .041). A marginally significant trend for increased use of prescription medications for either diabetes (5.8% vs 2.6%; P= .07) or anxiety/depression (14.8% vs 9.3%; P= .06) was observed. Conclusions: At a relatively young median age, more than one-third of TCS have hypogonadism, which is significantly associated with increased cardiovascular disease risk factors, and erectile dysfunction. Providers should screen TCS for hypogonadism and treat symptomatic patients.
Immunotherapy is now the fourth pillar of cancer treatment, but the methodology used to determine who will benefit is still a work in progress. PD-L1 is commonly used as a predictive biomarker for immunotherapy, but others—such as immunogenic tumor biomarkers, host environment biomarkers and biomarkers of nonresponse—are being actively investigated. Additionally, research in combining biomarkers is currently being conducted, with new data emerging all the time.
Aysegul A. Sahin, Timothy D. Gilligan and Jimmy J. Caudell
Three experts discussed changes in the 8th edition of the AJCC Cancer Staging Manual and challenges regarding these changes for staging of breast cancer, testicular cancer, and head and neck cancer, respectively. In general, the staging changes for breast cancer and for human papillomavirus–positive oropharyngeal cancer were hailed as improvements, but the changes for testicular cancer were questioned as to their clinical relevance. Better studies are needed to improve staging for human papillomavirus–negative oropharyngeal cancer.