Addressing current challenges and future directions in immuno-oncology: expert perspectives from the 2017 NIBIT Foundation Think Tank, Siena, Italy.

Document Type


Publication Date


Publication Title

Cancer immunology, immunotherapy : CII


Biomarkers; CTLA-4; Immunotherapy; OX-40; PD-1; PD-L1


A collaborative think tank involving panellists from immuno-oncology networks, clinical/translational investigators and the pharmaceutical industry was held in Siena, Italy, in October 2017 to discuss the evolving immune-oncology landscape, identify selected key challenges, and provide a perspective on the next steps required in the translation of current research and knowledge to clinical reality. While there is a trend of combining new agents (e.g., co-stimulator agonists) with a PD-1/PD-L1 treatment backbone, use of alternative combination therapy approaches should also be considered. While the rapid evolution in systems biology provides a deeper understanding of tumor and tumor microenvironment heterogeneity, there remains the need to identify and define genuinely predictive biomarkers to guide treatment and patient selection. Cross-specialty and cross-sector collaboration, along with a broader collective data-sharing approach are key to optimizing immuno-oncology therapy in clinical practice. Continued support of younger research-clinicians is essential for future success in clinical, translational and basic science investigations.

Clinical Institute





Earle A. Chiles Research Institute