Dr. Nowakowski on the Potential Role of Immunotherapy in MCL

Grzegorz S. Nowakowski, MD
Published: Tuesday, Aug 01, 2017



Grzegorz S. Nowakowski, MD, assistant professor of medicine at Mayo Clinic, discusses what potential immunotherapy agents have in the treatment landscape of mantle cell lymphoma (MCL).

The activity of single-agent PD-1 inhibitors in MCL has not been as significant as has been seen in Hodgkin lymphoma, Nowakowski explains. Therefore, it would be interesting to explore combinations of immunotherapy agents with other systemic therapies. For example, lenalidomide (Revlimid) is an immunomodulatory agent that stimulates the immune system, so a combination of PD-1 blockade plus lenalidomide could be an interesting approach in MCL. These studies are currently ongoing.

PD-1 inhibitors with cytotoxic therapy would also be an intriguing option, because chemotherapy traditionally tends to introduce additional mutations within tumor cells. Additional mutations can create new epitopes or antigens, which can then be recognized by the immune system, he says.


Grzegorz S. Nowakowski, MD, assistant professor of medicine at Mayo Clinic, discusses what potential immunotherapy agents have in the treatment landscape of mantle cell lymphoma (MCL).

The activity of single-agent PD-1 inhibitors in MCL has not been as significant as has been seen in Hodgkin lymphoma, Nowakowski explains. Therefore, it would be interesting to explore combinations of immunotherapy agents with other systemic therapies. For example, lenalidomide (Revlimid) is an immunomodulatory agent that stimulates the immune system, so a combination of PD-1 blockade plus lenalidomide could be an interesting approach in MCL. These studies are currently ongoing.

PD-1 inhibitors with cytotoxic therapy would also be an intriguing option, because chemotherapy traditionally tends to introduce additional mutations within tumor cells. Additional mutations can create new epitopes or antigens, which can then be recognized by the immune system, he says.



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