One of the most common types of brain tumors are metastases (secondary tumors that come from cancer in another part of the body). Typically, patients affected by brain metastases have a very poor survival rate. Some people benefit from immunotherapy via checkpoint inhibitors, but since it is difficult to access the tumor cells themselves, technicians often cannot effectively determine the cells’ immune phenotype. This makes it harder to find the most effective immunotherapy treatment for a specific tumor. However, Dr. Heyn et al. at the Vall d’Hebron Institute of Oncology (VHIO), and the National Centre for Genomic Analysis-Centre for Genomic Regulation (CNAG-CRG) in Barcelona have found another way to figure it out. They have discovered that they can match immune cell types found in brain lesions with those in the cerebrospinal fluid using single-cell RNA sequencing paired with T-cell receptor genotyping. These matched cell types can predict tumor cells’ responses to immunotherapy while being minimally-invasive. For those interested, here is the original article:

https://www.nature.com/articles/s41467-021-21789-x

On Immune Cells and Brain Metastasis

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