Expert Point of View: Shridar Ganesan, MD, PhD

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Shridar Ganesan, MD, PhD

Shridar Ganesan, MD, PhD

Shridar Ganesan, MD, PhD, of the Rutgers Cancer Institute of New Jersey, discussed the study on the gut microbiome. Dr. Ganesan noted that response to immunotherapy depends not only on tumor characteristics, but on the immune ­microenvironment as well, and this can clearly be influenced by host factors. These data suggest “that what’s happening in the gut may also reflect, in part, what kind of response occurs in the tumor,” he indicated.

Manipulation of intestinal flora affects the efficacy of checkpoint blockade in mouse tumor models, noted Dr. Ganesan, and gut microbiome profiles correlate with the development of colitis in patients treated with the checkpoint inhibitor ipilimumab (Yervoy).

Developing Biomarkers

As more information emerges about the microbiome’s importance, Dr. Ganesan said, a key consideration will be how to integrate host features (microbiome, other markers) with tumor features in developing biomarkers of response and resistance. ■

Disclosure: Dr. Ganesan reported relationships with Inspirata, Novartis, and Merck.

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