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Dr. Mary Jo Fidler on the Role of Oligoclonal T Cell Expansion in NSCLC

Mary Jo Fidler, MD
Published: Wednesday, Oct 26, 2016

Mary Jo Fidler, MD, associate professor, medical oncology, hematology, internal medicine, Rush University Medical Center, discusses how early and persistent oligoclonal T cell expansion correlates with durable response to anti-PD1 therapy in non-small cell lung cancer treatment (NSCLC).

There is a need for other ways to identify patients that will respond to PD-1 inhibitors beside PD-L1 testing. In one recent study, researchers found that both in the tumor cells and the circulating blood, there is an expansion of oligoclonal T cells in patients after they receive anti-PD1 therapy for NSCLC. These T cells were cloned or derived from one or a few cells.

These findings were significant, says Fidler, because in the patients that seem to derive benefit, researchers were able to detect these T cells, which presumably were released by adding the checkpoint inhibitor. However, patients that did not respond to the checkpoint inhibitors did not have the same uptake in these T cells, says Fidler.

Based on these findings, it is possible that oligoclonal T cells could become an alternative method for selecting which patients should continue on with checkpoint inhibitors, and which patients should receive other immunomodulators to try and increase their immune response.

Mary Jo Fidler, MD, associate professor, medical oncology, hematology, internal medicine, Rush University Medical Center, discusses how early and persistent oligoclonal T cell expansion correlates with durable response to anti-PD1 therapy in non-small cell lung cancer treatment (NSCLC).

There is a need for other ways to identify patients that will respond to PD-1 inhibitors beside PD-L1 testing. In one recent study, researchers found that both in the tumor cells and the circulating blood, there is an expansion of oligoclonal T cells in patients after they receive anti-PD1 therapy for NSCLC. These T cells were cloned or derived from one or a few cells.

These findings were significant, says Fidler, because in the patients that seem to derive benefit, researchers were able to detect these T cells, which presumably were released by adding the checkpoint inhibitor. However, patients that did not respond to the checkpoint inhibitors did not have the same uptake in these T cells, says Fidler.

Based on these findings, it is possible that oligoclonal T cells could become an alternative method for selecting which patients should continue on with checkpoint inhibitors, and which patients should receive other immunomodulators to try and increase their immune response.


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