A recently conducted study has found that in comparison with low-grade gliomas, high-grade gliomas in canines contain more immune cells linked to suppressing immune response. The study adds to evidence suggesting that these tumors may recruit immune cells which assist with immunosuppression. Its findings may be useful in the development of future glioma treatments for both dogs and humans.
Gliomas are caused by support cells known as glial cells, which mutate and become cancerous. These cells are usually located throughout the spinal cord and brain. In canines, gliomas make up nearly 35% of all intracranial cancers and are the second most common tumor type in the central nervous system. The average rate of survival for dogs with gliomas who undergo radiation therapy ranges between 9 to 14 months, which is akin to the 14-month rate of survival for humans who undergo chemotherapy, radiation and surgery as part of their treatment for gliomas.
The main types of canine glioma include undefined glioma, astrocytoma and oligodendroglioma. Each type is classified as high- or low-grade based on the microscopic features present.
Immunotherapy treatments make use of an individual’s immune system to fight cancer. This treatment has shown promise in treating various types of cancer but hasn’t been successful in treating gliomas in people as this particular type of cancer suppresses the immune system to allow the tumor to grow. Scientists are working towards better understanding the interaction between the immune system and gliomas, with the objective being to improve therapeutic outcomes.
The study was conducted by a research team comprising of researchers from various institutions who examined more than 70 different gliomas that had been acquired from veterinary patients seen between 2006 and 2018 at the North Carolina State College of Veterinary Medicine. The team used computerized image and immune-histochemical tagging analysis to identify the numbers of every type of immune cell in each tumor. The immune cells included macrophages, regulatory T lymphocytes, T lymphocytes and B lymphocytes.
The researchers discovered that there were higher numbers of polarized macrophages and regulatory T lymphocytes in high grade tumors, in comparison with low-grade tumors.
The first author of the study, Gregory Krane, explained that in healthy people, regulatory T lymphocytes prevented autoimmune ailments. However, cancer sometimes recruited and activated these cells to prevent the immune system from fighting tumors. This is why regulatory T lypmhocytes were found to be higher in high-grade gliomas, in comparison with the numbers found in low-grade gliomas.
Krane hopes that the study will afford researchers more insights into how gliomas affect the immune system and in the long run, help in the development of better treatments for gliomas.
In the meantime, companies such as CNS Pharmaceuticals Inc. (NASDAQ: CNSP) are working to develop superior remedies for the malignancies that impact the central nervous system as well as the brain.
NOTE TO INVESTORS: The latest news and updates relating to CNS Pharmaceuticals Inc. (NASDAQ: CNSP) are available in the company’s newsroom at https://ibn.fm/CNSP
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