Agent enhances immunotherapy's effect in kidney, prostate Ca in early study

April 4, 2012

A class I histone deacetylase inhibitor, entinostat, has been shown to boost the effectiveness of cancer immunotherapy for treatment of some solid tumors, including kidney and prostate cancer, according to preclinical research by a team from Roswell Park Cancer Institute.

A class I histone deacetylase inhibitor, entinostat, has been shown to boost the effectiveness of cancer immunotherapy for treatment of some solid tumors, including kidney and prostate cancer, according to preclinical research by a team from Roswell Park Cancer Institute. The findings support conclusions from earlier studies and suggest further testing in clinical settings.

Recently published online in the journal PLoS One (Jan. 27, 2012), the study has demonstrated the novel immunomodulatory effect through which entinostat appears to enhance the antitumor activity of interleukin-2 (IL-2) for kidney cancer and of a survivin cancer vaccine (SurVaxM).

“Entinostat has an immunomodulatory effect on regulatory T cells, which are like brakes for the immune system and are present in many tumors,” said lead researcher Roberto Pili, MD. “By suppressing these suppressor cells, entinostat releases the brakes and helps the immunotherapies to work better.”

The combination of a vaccine with approaches to deplete or suppress regulatory T cells “represents a rational strategy in prostate cancer therapy,” the authors wrote.

A clinical study testing the combination of entinostat with IL-2 in renal-cell cancer is under way at Roswell Park and other sites. Additional clinical studies of the combination of entinostat and other immunotherapies are planned in prostate cancer and other solid tumors.

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