The Sentinel


Tuesday, September 20, 2022


Dear JITC Readers,

Welcome to the latest edition of the JITC digest. Our clinical readers are likely still buzzing with excitement over some of the exciting data that was recently presented at the European Society for Medical Oncology (ESMO) Annual Meeting earlier this month. Immunotherapy was certainly the star of the show, with jaw-dropping response rates to neoadjuvant nivolumab plus ipilimumab in colorectal cancer in NICHE-2 and the first randomized phase III trial showing benefit with cell therapy in a solid tumor in M14TIL. 

Our highlighted papers this month are a nice complement to the news from Paris, featuring real-world clinical data and a position paper with implications for contemporary practice, as well as important translational research to set the stage for future immunotherapies. 

Ana Costa and colleagues use single-cell transcriptomics to characterize the tumor microenvironment of neuroblastoma in a clinically relevant murine model as well as samples from human patients, revealing new insights into the myeloid populations involved in suppressing T cell responses. 

In a drug repurposing screen, Laura Schäkel et al identify the approved anaplastic lymphoma kinase (ALK) inhibitor ceritinib as a novel allosteric inhibitor of CD39, which catalyzes the hydrolysis of ATP to AMP in a key first step in establishing adenosine-mediated immunosuppression. An excellent review on CD39 by David Allard, Bertrand Allard, and John Stagg was published in 2020 in JITC’s Immune Checkpoints Beyond PD-1 series. 

Zeynep Eroglu et al demonstrate that adjuvant anti-PD-1 in patients with sentinel lymph node positive melanoma who did not undergo immediate complete lymph node dissection (CLND) offers similar benefits in a retrospective analysis of real-world outcomes as was seen in the registrational trials of adjuvant therapy in which CLND was mandated. 

Finally, a timely position article from Ahmad A Tarhini and colleagues on behalf of the National Cancer Institute Early Drug Development Neoadjuvant Immunotherapy Working Group summarizes the current state of neoadjuvant immunotherapy of solid tumors, offering suggestions for future progress across disease settings.



Best regards,


Pedro J. Romero, MD
Editor-in-Chief, Journal for ImmunoTherapy of Cancer

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