Science https://doi.org/10.1126/science.abb5920 (2020)
A fecal microbiome transplant has shown the potential to induce a response to immunotherapy with antibody to the checkpoint immunoinhibitory receptor PD-1 (anti-PD-1) in people with metastatic melanoma refractory to treatment.
There are known links between the gut microbiome and responses to anti-PD-1 immunotherapy. However, modulating the microbiome as a therapeutic strategy has yet to be tried in the clinic.
Boursi and colleagues carried out a phase 1 trial of ten patients with metastatic melanoma refractory to treatment with anti-PD-1. The affected patients received a fecal microbiome transplant from two donors who had been treated with anti-PD-1 monotherapy and had achieved a compete response. In three of the patients treated, the authors observed a response to the monotherapy, including two complete responses.
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Stower, H. Microbiome transplant–induced response to immunotherapy. Nat Med 27, 21 (2021). https://doi.org/10.1038/s41591-020-01220-6