June is Cancer Immunotherapy Month

Cancer immunotherapy refers to treatments that can unleash the power of a patient’s immune system to fight his or her cancer. It is an exciting and fast-growing area of cancer research that is already helping many patients, and that holds a great deal of promise for many more.

Renee Shine is one such patient benefiting from immunotherapy after standard chemotherapy failed to halt her lung cancer. She shares her story in this video:

The American Association for Cancer Research (AACR) is supporting progress in immunotherapy in a variety of ways. In recognition of June as Cancer Immunotherapy Month, organized by our colleagues at the Cancer Research Institute (CRI), the AACR has compiled the following resources:

Informing the public

Sharing the latest research

  • Under the guidance of Robert D. Schreiber, PhD, and Philip D. Greenberg, MD, Cancer Immunology Research, one of the AACR’s eight scientific journals, publishes original articles reporting major advances in cancer immunology. The journal disseminates knowledge of immunology to the cancer research community, catalyzing cross-displinary work that yields a deeper understanding of the host-tumor relationship, more potent cancer treatments, and improved clinical outcomes.
  • In the June 2016 issue of Cancer Immunology Research, a pair of articles highlighted by Michel Sadelain, MD, PhD, describe effective countermeasures to prevent immune escape from CD19-targeted therapies that could lead to relapses. Another study reported that interfering with a specific target protein improved both CAR T-cell infiltration and efficacy. The June issue also contains an investigation into improving checkpoint therapies by combining them with a block to yet another immunosuppresive checkpoint. Finally, the journal includes a paper that describes the reason behind the reduced cancer risks of mice living in stress-free conditions: a single brain gene strongly influences the quality of the T-cell antitumor response.

Facilitating collaboration

  • CRI, the Association for Cancer Immunotherapy (CIMT), the European Academy of Tumor Immunology (EATI), and the AACR are proud to sponsor the second International Cancer Immunotherapy Conference in New York, September 25-28, 2016. The abstract submission deadline is June 16, 2016, and the advance registration deadline is August 8, 2016.
  • The next month, the AACR will host the Tumor Immunology and Immunotherapy Special Conference in Boston, October 20-23, 2016. The abstract submission deadline is July 18, 2016, and the advance registration deadline is September 9, 2016. This will be the sixth AACR Special Conference to provide a forum for the effective exchange of ideas between basic cancer immunologists, non-immunologists, and clinical oncologists, from academia to industry.
  • The AACR’s Cancer Immunology Working Group seeks to provide a forum for immunologists and non-immunologists alike to meet, exchange knowledge and ideas, and discuss the present status and future promise of this important discipline.

For other ways to get involved during Cancer Immunotherapy Month, visit www.cancerresearch.org/june for information and ideas from CRI.