Dr. Curiel publishes textbook on tumor immunotherapy
Contact: Elizabeth Allen
A UT Health Science Center San Antonio faculty member has published a comprehensive textbook in the rapidly evolving field of tumor immunotherapy.
Tyler Curiel, M.D., M.P.H., a professor in the School of Medicine, is editor of “Cancer Immunotherapy,” the first major textbook on the topic since 2007 and the most comprehensive to date.
“We are entering what I think to be the Golden Age of cancer immunotherapy,” Dr. Curiel said. “Rapid advances in understanding the immunopathogenesis of cancer are leading to the first generation of effective anti-cancer immunotherapies.
“After a lackluster start, with many mediocre or negative results, we are finally starting to see effective anti-cancer immunotherapies based on new paradigms resulting from work in a number of labs around the world, including ours,” he said.
The book discusses the major factors in tumor immunology, immunotherapeutic agents approved in the U.S. and Europe, as well as promising but unapproved ones, pre-clinical developments and challenges and intellectual issues facing investigators.
Among the book’s contributors are two more faculty members from the Health Science Center’s Cancer Therapy & Research Center: Robert Svatek, M.D., a urologic oncologist; and Devalingam Mahalingam, M.D., Ph.D., a hematologist.
Dr. Mahalingam contributed a chapter on antibodies, such as Herceptin, and a chapter on immunoconjugates as cancer immunotherapies. Dr. Svatek wrote the chapter on miscellaneous approaches, including bacillus Calmette-Guérin (BCG) for bladder cancer and Toll-like receptor agonists as cancer immunotherapies.
A potential advantage of successful immunotherapy treatments, Dr. Curiel said, is that they are specific enough in their targets that cancer patients may not suffer the toxicities that come with standard treatments. That would make immunotherapies much easier to tolerate among elderly patients, who are most at risk for cancer, “and they have the potential to make significant improvements in survival and quality of life in advanced cancers, a goal that most modern treatments fall short of.”
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