the good bit below, I will email this to me oncologist and immunologist. we live in exciting times.
Chronic inflammation has been previously linked to cancer initiation and progression, including over-activation of IL-1β. The differences in the response of the immune system to different chemotherapies may have to do with the mechanism of the therapy. The authors cite previous studies which show another type of chemotherapy, anthracycline, can facilitate an anticancer immune response through activation of acute inflammation and immunogenic cell death, a specific type of tumor cell death that results in an immune response.
An increase in IL-1β has also been shown in colorectal patients treated with 5-fluorouracil, according to the authors. This hints that combining inhibitors of either the inflammasome or IL-1β with either gemcitabine or 5-fluorouracil could enhance the antitumor effect. “The inhibition of this pathway could be useful to enhance the efficacy of this [chemotherapy],” said Ghiringhelli.
A phase I trial to show if an inhibitor of IL-1β can reverse the resistance to 5-fluorouracil in patients with metastatic colon cancer is currently ongoing. “That an IL-1β antagonist, already used in clinical practice, may improve the effects of existing chemotherapy regimens by reducing the immune suppression detected in this work, is compelling but depends on further experiments using drugs like 5-fluorouracil in situations as they are used in patients,” said Weber.