Inside Precision Medicine: Immunotherapy boosts head & neck cancer treatment

Inside Precision Medicine recently featured a clinical trial led by the University of Cincinnati's Trisha Wise-Draper, MD.

Wise-Draper, associate professor of medicine in the Division of Hematology/Oncology in UC’s College of Medicine, Head and Neck Center of Excellence co-leader, medical director of the University of Cincinnati Cancer Center Clinical Trials Office and Lab and a UC Health physician, recently published research showing that adding immunotherapy drug pembrolizumab to the standard of care for head and neck cancer patients increased survival rates for intermediate risk patients.

Wise-Draper told Inside Precision Medicine the "high pathological response rate just after 1 dose of treatment and the survival benefit associated" was a surprising result of the study.  In more than 50% of the patients, the drug caused the tumor to die before surgical resection—a much higher response than had been shown in previous studies of recurrent or metastatic head and neck cancer. Within this group, 100% of the patients were disease-free at one year.

“It was a really strong predictor of patients who are going to do well on this treatment,” Wise-Draper said. “Hopefully that is going to help us design trials to better understand who is going to respond and who is not.”

Read the Inside Precision Medicine story.

Wise-Draper's research was also featured in a Pharmacy Times article. Read the Pharmacy Times article.

Featured photo at top courtesy of UC Health.

Related Stories


Clean Earth Rovers cofounders named to Forbes 30 Under 30 list

November 30, 2023

A pair of graduates of the University of Cincinnati’s Venture Lab program were recognized as being among the top entrepreneurs in North America as part of the 2024 Forbes 30 Under 30 list. Clean Earth Rovers cofounders Michael Arens and David Constantine were named to the 13th annual Forbes 30 Under 30 list in the energy category.


UC Learning Lab inspires College of Medicine to SIT

November 29, 2023

In a convergence of academic integration, the University of Cincinnati's renowned colleges — Design, Architecture, Art, and Planning, Lindner College of Business, College of Engineering and Applied Sciences and College of Medicine — recently joined forces at the 1819 Innovation Hub for an ideation session that exemplifies the institution's commitment to interdisciplinary collaboration.

Debug Query for this