Over the past few years, therapeutic advancements in conventional treatment paradigms have led to an increase in survival among cancer patients. Recent developments in the field of immuno-oncology, such as the introduction of several cancer vaccines, adoptive T-cell therapies, and checkpoint inhibition therapies, have demonstrated significant potential, and some of the aforementioned therapies have already become a part of mainstream healthcare. However, studies on disease biology and treatment efficacy have demonstrated that the success of immunotherapies is related to a variety of unique genetic factors associated with both the patient’s genome and the disease pathology. Therefore, the screening of patients prior to conducting trials of existing (pipeline) therapeutics and novel product candidates, has gradually become an important parameter, contributing to clinical research success.
Why are immuno-oncology biomarkers so important?
Biomarkers offer the basis for such screening. Presently, there is a significant need for credible and biologically validated biomarkers for enabling impactful treatment-related decisions.
Which big pharma players are involved in this space?
A number of big pharma players are actively developing drugs in the immuno-oncology space. Below, I have highlighted the various biomarkers that big pharma players are evaluating across various indications.
In fact, over the years, the big pharma players have initiated a number of clinical trials across various biomarkers.
The recent acquisition of Forty Seven by Gilead for USD 5 billion has re-ignited the battle in this space. It will be interesting to see which big pharma comes out on top in the long-run.