Session Chair Profile

M.D., Associate Professor in the Department of Neurosurgery, Duke University Medical Center

Dr. Gromeier has re-engineered poliovirus for safe use as a cancer immunotherapy vehicle. The re-engineered virus, called PVSRIPO, cannot replicate in the normal brain, but can effectively target and destroy virtually all (solid tumor) neoplastic cells, due to ectopic expression of the poliovirus receptor CD155 on such cells. Tumor cell killing is not the principal means of efficacy, but sets up a range of pro-inflammatory and immunogenic events that can engender lasting anti-tumor immune effector responses. Phase I trials in recurrent glioblastoma (GBM) have produced durable complete clinical and radiographic responses in some patients.


Cancer Immunotherapy with Oncolytic Poliovirus
Oncolytic poliovirus immunotherapy is showing promise in patients with recurrent glioblastoma, a particularly challenging indication in oncology, that is resistant to all available modalities. Dr. Gromeier will discuss mechanisms of viral oncolytic immunotherapy and outline a path towards effective clinical application.

Session Abstract

Session Synopsis: Cancer Immunotherapy and Checkpoint Inhibitor technology are some of the most exciting new developments in the treatment of Cancer. Immunotherapy faces several challenges before they become more widely adopted, however, not least of which is the large difference in response rate between patients. This session will discuss the power and potential of using a patient’s own immune response to combat cancer, and the barriers to establish this form of treatment as a standard of care.