New Discoveries and Honors in Cancer Research

Read the latest cancer research and recognition from the members of the Damon Runyon scientific circle.
February 29, 2016
Immune therapy breaks down wall around pancreatic tumors

Gregory L. Beatty, MD, PhD (Nadia’s Gift Foundation Innovator ’12-’15) and colleagues at the Abramson Cancer Center at University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia, reported the discovery of how macrophage immune cells can be “re-educated” by an experimental immune therapy (CD40 antibodies) to help break down the scaffolding that surrounds and protects pancreatic cancer from chemotherapy. They also identified a role for several factors, including chemokine ligand 2 (CCL2) and interferon gamma (IFN-g), that are released by the immune system after treatment with CD40 antibodies, and cooperate to redirect macrophages to attack cancer. The researchers are hopeful that their findings will spark further clinical interest. The study was published in the scientific journal Cancer Discovery.