The Cancer Immunotherapy Trials Network (CITN) employs the collective expertise of top academic immunologists to design and conduct cancer therapy trials with the most promising immunotherapy agents prioritized for high potential in treating cancer, in collaboration with National Cancer Institute, foundation and industry partners. Our Vision is to facilitate broad availability of immunotherapy agents, with known and proven biologic function, for treating cancer patients.
The CITN is an offspring of the NCI Immunotherapy Agent Workshop, held in July 2007, where participants ranked a list of agents with high potential to serve as immunotherapeutic drugs for cancer. All of the prioritized agents had proven immunologic or physiologic function. Yet, even today, none are broadly available for testing in patients with cancer.
Building on the decisions made at the initial and two subsequent NCI prioritization workshops detailed below, the CITN will focus on conducting early phase clinical trials that use agents and novel regimens with consensus prioritization that are most likely to prove effective and lead to regulatory approval in the foreseeable future.
Strategy: The CITN has selected the following key areas:
- Focusing on agents with known and proven biologic function that have received consensus prioritization in previous NCI workshops
- Focusing on regimens with clear immunologic endpoints likely to inform the next phases of drug development—specifically, those that prospectively and predictably increase the number of T cells specific for known and defined antigens
- Developing regimens that can be applied in multiple circumstances by multiple investigators
- Providing high-quality immunogenicity and biomarker data that elucidate mechanisms of response or failure and thereby facilitate the design of subsequent trials
Dr. Mac Cheever is the Principal Investigator at CITN responsible for the Central Operations & Statistical Center (COSC). He is also the Director of the Solid Tumor Research for the Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center (FHCRC). For additional information about the CITN, please go to: http://citninfo.org