Immune checkpoint inhibitors in gastrointestinal malignancies
Gastrointestinal (GIT) tumors are extremely fatal and lethal tumors with limited therapeutic options. Antitumor immunity is new line of research in management of solid tumors. Immune check points are negative regulators of immune system and control the immune response. These checkpoints are exploited by cancer cells. Cancer cells causes early activation of checkpoints and suppress the immune response, and therefore have unchecked growth and metastasis of malignant cells. Immune checkpoint inhibitors (ICIs), downregulates these checkpoints and activate the proliferation of cytotoxic T cells which helps in lysis of tumor cells. ICIs have shown the promising results in management of melanoma, non-small cell lung cancer and renal cell carcinoma. Encouraged by their recent success in solid tumors many clinical trials are ongoing to evaluate their efficacy in GIT tumors. In this article we will try to explain rationale for use of ICIs in GIT tumors. We will summarize the ongoing research, preliminary results and future aspects of ICIs in GIT malignancies.