Dr. Gorlick on the Challenges of Identifying Immunotherapeutic Targets in Osteosarcomas

May 4, 2021
Richard Gorlick, MD

Partner | Cancer Centers | <b>MD Anderson</b>

Richard Gorlick, MD, discusses the challenges of identifying immunotherapeutic targets in osteosarcomas.

Richard Gorlick, MD, professor, department chair, Mosbacher Pediatrics Chair, Department of Pediatrics Patient Care, division head, Division of Pediatrics, director, Department of Pediatric Sarcoma Research Laboratory, The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center, discusses the challenges of identifying immunotherapeutic targets in osteosarcomas.

Novel therapies are needed to treat patients with osteosarcomas, says Gorlick. Although antibody-drug conjugates have been evaluated, they have not demonstrated significant success in this disease subtype, Gorlick explains.

During the 2021 AACR Annual Meeting, results from a study showed that proteomic profiling identified multiple targets on the surface of osteosarcoma. Prior to this work, surface targets in osteosarcoma were not largely understood, Gorlick says. Some surface targets, such as HER2, that demonstrated modest expression in osteosarcoma but high expression in other cancer types were evaluated, Gorlick says. However, there doesn’t appear to be enough of the protein expressed on the surface of osteosarcoma cells to drive the effectiveness of HER2-targeted treatments, Gorlick explains.

As such, the novel targets identified by the study may pave the way for new therapies to test in this disease subtype, concludes Gorlick.