Tuesday, February 5, 2019

Immunotherapy combinations show promise for liver cancer

Immunotherapy combinations show promise for liver cancer
Liz Highleyman

Over years or decades, chronic hepatitis B or C, heavy alcohol use, fatty liver disease or other causes of liver damage can lead to cirrhosis and HCC, the most common type of primary liver cancer. Often diagnosed at a late stage, liver cancer is hard to treat and is a leading cause of cancer deaths worldwide. HCC does not respond well to traditional chemotherapy and a majority of people do not respond to current targeted therapies or immunotherapies. Biliary tract cancer, involving the gallbladder or bile ducts, is even more difficult to treat.

Charalampos Floudas and colleagues from the US National Cancer Institute evaluated a combination of durvalumab and tremelimumab in 10 people with HCC and 12 with biliary tract cancers that could not be surgically removed or treated locally. 

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