Proving the Worth of ICIs
New evidence points to the safety – and benefits – of immune checkpoint therapy in HIV-positive cancer patients.
Jonathan James | | Quick Read
Live expectancy for HIV-positive individuals in the US has improved dramatically in recent years (1). Now, the leading cause of death for these patients is cancer. And yet, clinical trials for new cancer therapies continue to exclude HIV-positive patients, restricting clinicians’ abilities to make informed treatment decisions (2). A systematic review of HIV-positive patients treated with the most common form of immunotherapy – immune checkpoint inhibitors (ICIs) – suggests significant benefit, strengthening the hand of scientists arguing for the inclusion of these patients in a wider breadth of trials (3).
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- Antiretroviral Therapy Cohort Collaboration, “Survival of HIV-positive patients starting antiretroviral therapy between 1996 and 2013: a collaborative analysis of cohort studies”, Lancet HIV, 4, 8, 349–56 (2017). PMID: 28501495.
- RF Little, “Cancer Clinical Trials in Persons with HIV Infection”, Curr Opin HIV AIDS, 12, 1, 84–88 (2018). PMID: 27559711.
- MR Cook and C Kim, “Safety and Efficacy of Immune Checkpoint Inhibitor Therapy in Patients With HIV Infection and Advanced-Stage Cancer: A Systematic Review”, JAMA Oncol [Epub ahead of print] (2019). PMID: 30730549.
- I Puzanov et al., “Managing toxicities associated with immune checkpoint inhibitors: consensus recommendations from the Society for Immunotherapy of Cancer (SITC) Toxicity Management Working Group”, J Immunother Cancer, 5, 9 [published online] (2017). PMID: 29162153.