Immunotherapy with Radiation Therapy Shows Promise in Treating Lung Cancer Tumors
The combined effect of immunotherapy with radiation showed strong results in treating tumors in lung cancer patients, according to the results of a study published August 15, 2014, in Radiation Oncology.
The researchers examined the use of a tumor-specific mRNA-based vaccination combined with radiation in 2 tumor models, a low immunogenic Lewis lung cancer (LLC) tumor, and a high-immunogenic E.G7-OVA. The study evaluated the molecular mechanism that was induced by the combination therapy through gene expression arrays and analyses of tumor-infiltrating cells.
In testing on mice, the researchers used messenger RNA (mRNA)-based cancer vaccines in the combination treatment in the LLC tumor model, which is resistant to different therapeutic regimens, such as Avastin, radiation, and adoptive T-cell transfer.
The researchers found that immunotherapy alone did not inhibit tumor growth, while radiation alone resulted in transient inhibition. The combination of the 2 therapies, however, resulted in a “strong synergistic antitumor effect,” which shows the efficacy of the treatment model in controlling tumor growth in a lowimmunogenic carcinoma. The treatment also increased CD4+, CD8+, and NKT cell infiltration of mouse tumors. The study authors concluded that the combination therapy provides a basis for developing more potent anticancer treatments.