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Expert Opin Investig Drugs. 2000 Jun;9(6):1413-7.

American Association for Cancer Research: Clinical trials of immunotherapeutics and immunologic monitoring. April 1-5, 2000, San Francisco, CA, USA.

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  • 1Antigen Research and Development Division, Northwest Biotherapeutics, Inc., Seattle, WA 98134, USA.


A major session at this annual gathering of the cancer researchers from around the globe dealt with the current state of immunotherapy for cancer. Immunotherapy is a form of cancer treatment that enhances its scientific promise and legitimacy with each passing year. As a result, this topic has become one of the most highly attended and anticipated of all the sessions during the AACR. This year's session included further progress from the laboratory to the clinic involving an ever-increasing number of cancers. For example, brain, lung and prostate cancer are now as well-represented as melanoma and lymphoma at such forums. This year's session continued the trend of impressive biosafety of both cell- and antibody-based vaccines. Therefore, these cancer vaccines offer optimism in treatment benefit as well as a minimal impact on quality of life. Lastly, the increasing number of clinical responses allows for true immunological monitoring, as scientists strive to unlock the mysteries behind what makes one patient respond to treatment and another progress. Several groups discussed in vitro immune parameters that were studied in concert with their clinical trials. Others discussed ways in which those in the immunotherapy community can work towards more reliable immune monitoring and ultimately a surrogate marker for response.

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