Dr. Shubhada Chiplunkar
Director, Advanced Centre for Treatment,
Research and Education in Cancer (ACTREC),
Navi Mumbai, Maharashtra
Dear I-OSI Members,
During the past decade anti-cancer immunotherapy has evolved from a promising therapeutic option to robust reality that has changed treatment outcomes. The development of cancer vaccines, CAR-T cells, and checkpoint inhibitors are changing the paradigms of clinical cancer management. Immunotherapy is rapidly evolving cancer treatment modality with exciting benefits but also poses unique challenges for patients and the healthcare team. Clinical studies are being initiated at an accelerating pace to test the safety and efficacy of various immunotherapeutic regimens in cancer patients, either as standalone interventions or combined with radiotherapy, antineoplastic agents or epigenetic modulators.
Cancer Immunotherapy is nascent in India. The Immuno-Oncology Society of India (I-OSI) was established with the aim to increase public awareness about immunotherapies, boost basic and clinical research on immuneoncology and provide a forum for interdisciplinary interactions between physicians and scientists. The I-OSI will be a forum to connect basic scientists working in immunology with clinicians to bring lab discoveries to bedside. I-OSI will aim to keep all the stakeholders up-to-date in this rapidly evolving field.
Progress made in human genome sequencing and bioinformatics,detection and understanding of genetic and epigenetic informationof tumors and immune landscapes will help to establish individualized immunotherapy to obtain clinical benefits for more patients.
As the number of immune therapies are expected to rise in the foreseeable future, there are several key issues that remain and require further investigation in order to optimize the anti-cancer potential of this class of agents. Primary and acquired resistance becomes one of the major obstacles, which greatly limits the long lasting effects and wide application of cancer immunotherapy.
In order to optimize benefit and minimize risk there is an urgent need to have predictive biomarkers, identify hyperprogressors, understand themechanisms of resistance and immune related toxicities, decide treatment duration and clinical trial design.
It gives me great pleasure to present the first issue of the I-OSI Newsletter. I take this opportunity to invite all the I-OSI members to actively contribute to the Newsletter by sharing their thoughts and expertise that will create new linkages and foster opportunities for networking.
Dr. Shubhada Chiplunkar
Immuno-Oncology Society Of India