This was out first time at the Society for Immunotherapy of Cancer’s annual event, and we weren’t disappointed! For those of you unable to make it to SITC this year, enjoy our take on the event highlights. To all those we met, see you next year!

1. Tumors Acquire Resistance to Treatment with Checkpoint Inhibitors

We know that some patients respond to treatment and others do not. Now it’s clear that after an initial response, tumors acquire resistance. Loss of β2 microglobulin expression is one route to resistance as are other mechanisms of HLA silencing. Immune suppression in the tumor microenvironment and inhibition by Tregs and MDSC are also important.

2. Next Up: Drugs Targeting Adenosine Receptors, CD73 and IDO1 Indoleamine 2,3-dioxygenase 1

These three targets are implicated in creating the immune suppressive environment within tumors, so several groups are developing drugs and antibodies to target them. These drugs and antibodies will likely be used in combination with checkpoint inhibitors in hopes of increasing rates of treatment success.

3. The Life of the Saturday Night Party

If you stayed for the party, you weren’t disappointed! Dr. Willem Overwijk of the MD Anderson Cancer Center wowed the audience with his rendition of Summer and Streisand’s No More Tears — with an immunotherapy bent, of course!

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