Effective immunotherapy for children with cancer was found more tolerable
The prestigious Journal „The Lancet“ publishes clinical trial results of pediatric oncologists
Neuroblastoma is associated with the highest death rate amongst children with cancer. Immunotherapy with a neuoblastoma specific antibody in combination with cytokines has improved the survival of this disease, and until now, the antibody treatment was only given in combination.
A clinical research team around Professor Holger N. Lode at the University Medicine of Greifswald and Professor Ruth Ladenstein together with Institutions of the International Society of Pediatric Oncology Europe for Neuroblastoma (SIOPEN) showed for the first time, that the antibody by itself is equally effective. As the combination of antibody with interleukin-2 is associated with a higher rate of substantial side effects, the new results will allow a more tolerable regimen in the future.
“These are very clear results show that immunotherapy of children with neuroblastoma can be given in a regimen with the same efficacy but a significantly improved tolerability” says Professor Holger N. Lode, the Director of the University Children´s Hospital in Greifswald. These results were published in the prestigious Journal Lancet Oncology*.
Only recently the Pediatric Oncology unit in Greifswald was certified as a center by the German Cancer Society (Deutsche Krebsgesellschaft e.V). A clinical research focus of the unit is the development of immunotherapies with antibody constructs, that recognize cancer cells and redirect a specific immune response against the malignancy. In the last years, the unit developed into a leading center for neuroblastoma immunotherapy with over 200 children treated from all over the world. More recently, also active immunotherapies and vaccines are developed in order to maintain a long lasting immune response to prevent late relapse.
*„Interleukin 2 with anti-GD2 antibody ch14.18/CHO (dinutuximab beta) in patients with high-risk neuroblastoma (HR-NBL1/SIOPEN): a multicentre, randomised, phase 3 trial“
Published: Lancet Oncology, November 12, 2018; DOI: https://doi.org/10.1016/S1470-2045(18)30578-3
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