miércoles, 29 de mayo de 2019

No one knows why cancer therapies cause diabetes

The Readout
Damian Garde

No one knows why cancer therapies cause diabetes

Checkpoint inhibitors for cancer have brought dramatic improvements to a fraction of cancer patients. But for a small percentage of people who get those immunotherapies, the benefits come with a mysterious and irreversible side effect.

About 1% of people who take drugs like Keytruda and Opdivo develop Type 1 diabetes, a lifelong metabolic disorder that requires regular doses of insulin. And, as Elie Dolgin writes for STAT, scientists are still scratching their heads as to why.

Now, with $10 million in research funding, groups including the Parker Institute for Cancer Immunotherapy are banding together to investigate the phenomenon and, ideally, find a way to extract all the benefits of checkpoint inhibitors without the risk of triggering diabetes.

“I’m pretty open-minded about what mechanistically can be happening,” Parker Institute president and CEO Jeff Bluestone said. “And I’m really optimistic that we’re going to learn a lot quickly.”

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