In an article published in JAMA Oncology, researchers discussed recommendations for patients who develop coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) while receiving immunotherapy or other advanced immune-engaging therapies.
Though conventional cancer treatments, such as chemotherapy and radiation, directly damage both normal and cancerous cells, immune-engaging therapies utilize the patients’ own immune systems to specifically target tumor cells.
“Conventional immune checkpoint inhibitors (ICIs), such as programmed cell death 1 and cytotoxic T-lymphocyte antigen 4 inhibitors, restore the tumor immunosurveillance and revivify the immune system to target the tumor cells,” the authors wrote. “Hence, ICI works by bolstering the immune system, which may result in autoimmunity.”
Though a lot remains to be discovered in regard to COVID-19, the preliminary immunological understanding…