Monocytes may shed light on melanoma therapy

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Science  09 Feb 2018:
Vol. 359, Issue 6376, pp. 649-650
DOI: 10.1126/science.359.6376.649-f

Checkpoint blockade immunotherapy has shown considerable promise for the control of metastatic melanoma. Despite the success stories, there are still many patients who do not respond at all. Thus, identification of molecular markers to predict which patients could have beneficial treatment outcomes is key. Krieg et al. used high-dimensional single-cell mass cytometry to analyze the peripheral blood of melanoma patients. Samples were analyzed before and after the patients' 12-week course of treatment with PD-1 immunotherapy. Those patients who responded better had increased activation and frequency of monocytes (defined as CD14+CD16HLA-DRhi cells) in their blood before starting treatment. The researchers propose that monocyte profiling could be used to stratify patients before commencing PD-1 immunotherapy.

Nat. Med. 10.1038/nm.4466 (2018).

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