Immunotherapies: Opportunities and Challenges

When: July 17, 2019, 12:00 pm - 12:30 pm
Where: Harvard Medical School Online Webinar, N/A

In this HMS webinar, Justin Gainor, will discuss the field of immuno-oncology and immunotherapy, the need for interdisciplinary research and the roles of patients, providers and health care economists

Immunotherapies are rapidly transforming the landscape of oncology. Over the last five years, the field has witnessed the emergence of two major forms of immunotherapy: CAR-T cells and immune checkpoint inhibitors, which are both growing in their applications as regulatory approval expands for them. Despite tremendous enthusiasm for immunotherapies, these therapies also pose significant challenges. The major promise of immune checkpoint inhibitors is that these agents can produce more durable cancer control than what oncology has seen previously, but, currently, immunotherapies produce responses in only approximately 20% of patients. Furthermore, the drugs are costly and tumors may find ways to develop resistance to therapy. In response, researchers, including oncologists, immunologists, pathologists, computational biologists and radiologists, are working to identify predictive biomarkers to indicate which therapies are appropriate and are creating rationale combination therapies, while simultaneously working to streamline and improve the clinical trial process. In this Harvard Medical School webinar, Justin Gainor, MD, director of targeted immunotherapy at Massachusetts General Hospital and assistant professor of medicine at Harvard Medical School, will discuss the burgeoning field of immuno-oncology and immunotherapy, the need for interdisciplinary research and the roles patients, providers, and health care economists can play.

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