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Special Issue "Molecular Drivers of Responsiveness to Cancer Immunotherapy"

A special issue of International Journal of Molecular Sciences (ISSN 1422-0067). This special issue belongs to the section "Molecular Oncology".

Deadline for manuscript submissions: 31 October 2021.

Special Issue Editors

Dr. Venkatesh Hegde
E-Mail Website
Guest Editor
Department of Thoracic/Head and Neck Medical Oncology, University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center, Houston, TX, USA
Interests: mechanisms of immunosuppression; cannabinoid receptors; tumor immunology; anti-cancer vaccines; immunotherapeutics; immunosuppressive myeloid cells (MDSC)
Dr. Stephanie M. Dorta-Estremera
E-Mail
Guest Editor
Cancer Biology Division, University of Puerto Rico Comprehensive Cancer Center, San Juan PR;Department of Microbiology and Medical Zoology, University of Puerto Rico Medical Sciences Campus, San Juan PR, Puerto Rico
Interests: tumor immunology; immunotherapy resistance; immune monitoring

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

Cancer immunotherapeutics such as cancer vaccines and immune checkpoint inhibitors act by activating the immune system against cancer. Despite recent advances and encouraging successes, the pressing problem is the resistance to these treatments in the majority of patients; for example, only <10–15% of patients respond to checkpoint inhibitors such as anti-PD-1 and anti-CTLA-4. Therefore, understanding the mechanisms of resistance to immunotherapy as well as developing treatments to overcome resistance and improve responsiveness are critical areas of research. This Special Issue of the International Journal of Molecular Sciences will discuss emerging concepts in these areas. The topics will encompass molecular and cellular mechanisms of resistance to checkpoint blockade and anti-tumor vaccines, innate and acquired resistance, pathways of immunosuppression including suppressor cell populations, and approaches combining chemo-radiation or other targeted treatments to improve immunotherapy responsiveness and overall efficacy.

Dr. Venkatesh Hegde
Dr. Stephanie M. Dorta-Estremera
Guest Editors

Manuscript Submission Information

Manuscripts should be submitted online at www.mdpi.com by registering and logging in to this website. Once you are registered, click here to go to the submission form. Manuscripts can be submitted until the deadline. All papers will be peer-reviewed. Accepted papers will be published continuously in the journal (as soon as accepted) and will be listed together on the special issue website. Research articles, review articles as well as short communications are invited. For planned papers, a title and short abstract (about 100 words) can be sent to the Editorial Office for announcement on this website.

Submitted manuscripts should not have been published previously, nor be under consideration for publication elsewhere (except conference proceedings papers). All manuscripts are thoroughly refereed through a single-blind peer-review process. A guide for authors and other relevant information for submission of manuscripts is available on the Instructions for Authors page. International Journal of Molecular Sciences is an international peer-reviewed open access semimonthly journal published by MDPI.

Please visit the Instructions for Authors page before submitting a manuscript. There is an Article Processing Charge (APC) for publication in this open access journal. For details about the APC please see here. Submitted papers should be well formatted and use good English. Authors may use MDPI's English editing service prior to publication or during author revisions.

Keywords

  • cancer vaccines
  • checkpoint blockade
  • cytokines and chemokines
  • immunosuppression
  • immunotherapy resistance
  • suppressor cells

Published Papers (1 paper)

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Research

Article
Molecular Mechanisms of PD-1 and PD-L1 Activity on a Pan-Cancer Basis: A Bioinformatic Exploratory Study
Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2021, 22(11), 5478; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/ijms22115478 - 22 May 2021
Viewed by 1292
Abstract
Immune checkpoint blockade targeting PD-1 (PDCD1)/PD-L1 (CD274) is increasingly used for multiple cancers. However, efficacy and adverse-related events vary significantly. This bioinformatic study interrogated molecular differences pertaining to PDCD1/CD274 and their correlated genes on a pan-cancer basis to identify differences between cancer types. [...] Read more.
Immune checkpoint blockade targeting PD-1 (PDCD1)/PD-L1 (CD274) is increasingly used for multiple cancers. However, efficacy and adverse-related events vary significantly. This bioinformatic study interrogated molecular differences pertaining to PDCD1/CD274 and their correlated genes on a pan-cancer basis to identify differences between cancer types. Patient RNA-seq data from fifteen cancer types were accessed on cBioPortal to determine the role of PDCD1/CD274 in patient survival and to identify positively and negatively correlated genes, which were also assessed for clinical relevance. Genes correlating with PDCD1/CD274 across multiple cancers were taken forward for drug repurposing via DRUGSURV and microRNA analysis using miRDB and miRabel. MicroRNAs were also screened for clinical relevance using OncomiR. Forty genes were consistently correlated with PDCD1/CD274 across multiple cancers, with the cancers themselves exhibiting a differential role for the correlated genes in terms of patient survival. Esophageal and renal cancers in particular stood out in this regard as having a unique survival profile. Forty-nine putative microRNAs were identified as being linked to the PDCD1/CD274 network, which were taken forward and further assessed for clinical relevance using OncomiR and previously published literature. One hundred and thirty significant survival associations for 46 microRNAs across fourteen groups of cancers were identified. Finally, a total of 23 putative repurposed drugs targeting multiple components of the PDCD1/CD274 network were identified, which may represent immunotherapeutic adjuvants. Taken together, these results shed light on the varying PDCD1/CD274 networks between individual cancers and signpost a need for more cancer-specific investigations and treatments. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Molecular Drivers of Responsiveness to Cancer Immunotherapy)
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