GI cancer: killer cell immunotherapy is an option for advanced disease

  • Du H & al.
  • BMC Cancer
  • 28 Apr 2020

  • curated by Jim Kling
  • Univadis Clinical Summaries
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Takeaway

  • A meta-analysis shows efficacy of cytokine-induced killer cell/dendritic cell combined with cytokine-induced killer cell immunotherapy (CIK/DC-CIK) in the treatment of advanced gastrointestinal (GI) cancer.

Why this matters

  • This form of immunotherapy has been tested in multiple clinical trials, with mixed results.

Study design

  • Meta-analysis of 9 studies (n=1113).
  • Funding: None.

Key results

  • Chemotherapy plus immunotherapy was associated with longer PFS than chemotherapy alone (risk ratios, 95% CIs) at:
    • 1 year: 1.34 (1.13-1.59);
    • 3 years: 1.39 (1.20-1.62); and
    • 5 years: 1.99 (1.52-2.60).
  • Groups did not differ significantly in rates of complete response, partial response, or overall response rate.
  • Immunotherapy plus chemotherapy was associated with better QoL than was chemotherapy alone (weighted mean difference, 16.09; 95% CI, 1.66-30.52).
  • Groups did not differ significantly with respect to rates of thrombocytopenia, nausea, vomiting, abnormal liver function, neutropenia, or myelosuppression.
  • Various subgroup analyses returned similar results to the overall analysis.

Limitations

  • Multiple factors affect CIK/DC-CIK immunotherapy, including injection mode, tumor stage, and metastasis cycle, and these differences were not accounted for.
  • The analysis included publishing bias and heterogeneity that could not be completely eliminated.