Researchers at Moffitt Cancer Center have carried out a clinical trial in which patients with metastatic melanoma were given chemotherapy and an immunotherapy of adoptive cell transfer (ACT) with tumor infiltrating lymphocytes (TIL). Tumor tissues were surgically removed from patients, minced and grown in culture. The treatment combined chemotherapy, then ACT with TIL, followed by interleukin-2 (IL-2). The combination therapy drew a high response rate from some patients.
The study appears in the October issue of the Journal of Immunotherapy.
"Our purpose was to demonstrate the feasibility of performing TIL growth and the efficacy of ACT TIL therapy using techniques developed at the National Cancer Institute," said Amod Sarnaik, M.D., assistant member of the Cutaneous Oncology Department at Moffitt. "Combining chemotherapy with ACT and high dose IL-2 resulted in a 38 percent objective response rate in patients with metastatic melanoma."
"Although our clinical study successfully met its goal of demonstrating that ACT TIL therapy could be offered to advanced melanoma patients, strategies to improve on its feasibility and efficacy are under way," said Shari A. Pilon-Thomas, Ph.D., assistant member of the Immunology Program at Moffitt. "Combination therapies that enhance the proliferation and function of TIL are being explored."
A second-generation ACT TIL trial is enrolling patients at Moffitt. For more, patients can go to the trial website or call Moffitt at 813-745-4279.