Oops, you're using an old version of your browser so some of the features on this page may not be displaying properly.

MINIMAL Requirements: Google Chrome 24+Mozilla Firefox 20+Internet Explorer 11Opera 15–18Apple Safari 7SeaMonkey 2.15-2.23

e-Poster Display Session

97TiP - Identification of therapeutic targets in patients with squamous cell carcinoma of the head and neck who progress on or after anti-PD-(L)1 therapy: An IMMUcan sub-project


09 Dec 2020


e-Poster Display Session


Athénaïs Van Der Elst


Annals of Oncology (2020) 31 (suppl_7): S1452-S1456. 10.1016/annonc/annonc393


A. Van Der Elst1, M. Morfouace2, H. Hong3, R. Liechti4, J. Machiels5

Author affiliations

  • 1 Institut De Recherche Clinique Et Expérimentale (pole Miro), UCLouvain, 1200 - Brussels/BE
  • 2 EORTC, Brussels/BE
  • 3 Merck Healthcare KGaA, Darmstadt/DE
  • 4 SIB Swiss Institue of Bioinformatics, Lausanne/CH
  • 5 Cliniques Universitaires Saint-Luc (UCLouvain Saint-Luc), Woluwe-Saint-Lambert/BE

Abstract 97TiP


Nivolumab and pembrolizumab are approved for the treatment of recurrent/metastatic Squamous Cell Carcinoma of the Head and Neck (SCCHN). However, a significant number of patients are not responding to PD-(L)1 inhibitors and, ultimately, the majority of the patients will finally progress. No standard of care exists for patients who progress after platinum-based chemotherapy or PD-1 inhibitors. Median overall survival of these patients is dismal (5-6 months). Tumor molecular mechanisms and the role of the immune micro-environment implicated in disease progression on or after anti-PD1 therapy need to be better characterized to identify new therapeutic targets. This will guide the rational development of therapeutic combinations.

Trial Design

IMMUcan is a European translational research study aiming at generating broad molecular and cellular profiling data of the tumor and its microenvironment from up to 3000 patients derived from 5 different cancer types: head and neck, colorectal, lung, renal and breast cancers. Collaborations with clinical trials are also possible, such as EORTC-HNCG-1559 study (UPSTREAM trial). This biomarker-driven umbrella trial enrolls patients with recurrent/metastatic SCCHN, progressing after platinum-based chemotherapy. The majority of the enrolled patients were pre-treated with PD-(L)1 inhibitors (anti-PD-(L)1 exposed patients), while a control population is also available (anti-PD-(L)1 naïve patients). Biological material of these two distinct populations will be analyzed in IMMUcan: Whole Exome Sequencing, RNA sequencing, multiplex immunofluorescence and Imaging Mass Cytometry. The biological characteristics together with the clinical data will be analyzed to characterize the immune molecular profile of SCCHN that progress on or after anti-PD-(L)1 therapy with the final aim to identify therapeutic targets and to guide the development of rational therapeutic combinations. Those results will be completed with patients prospectively enrolled in the Head and Neck cohort of IMMUcan, via the EORTC-SPECTA infrastructure. For more information on IMMUcan, please visit https://immucan.eu/.

Clinical trial identification

SPECTA: NCT02834884 - 15/07/2016; UPSTREAM: NCT03088059 - 23/03/2017.

Legal entity responsible for the study



IMI2 JU grant agreement 821558, supported by EU’s Horizon 2020 and EFPIA. (Merck, Bayer, Abbvie, Eli Lilly, GSK, Janssen, Sanofi Aventis, Pierre Fabre, Servier).


H. Hong: Full/Part-time employment: Merck KGaA. J-P. Machiels: Travel/Accommodation/Expenses: Amgen; Honoraria (institution), Advisory/Consultancy, Travel/Accommodation/Expenses: BMS; Advisory/Consultancy, Travel/Accommodation/Expenses: MSD; Honoraria (self): Debio; Honoraria (self): Nanobiotix; Honoraria (self): Psioxus; Honoraria (institution), Advisory/Consultancy, Travel/Accommodation/Expenses: Pfizer; Honoraria (institution), Advisory/Consultancy: Roche; Honoraria (institution), Advisory/Consultancy: Astra/Zeneca; Honoraria (institution), Advisory/Consultancy: Bayer; Honoraria (institution), Advisory/Consultancy: Innate; Honoraria (institution), Advisory/Consultancy: Merck Serono; Honoraria (institution), Advisory/Consultancy: Boerhinger; Honoraria (institution), Advisory/Consultancy: Novartis; Honoraria (institution), Advisory/Consultancy: Janssen; Honoraria (institution), Advisory/Consultancy: Incyte; Honoraria (institution), Advisory/Consultancy: Cue Biopharma; Honoraria (institution), Advisory/Consultancy: ALX Oncology. All other authors have declared no conflicts of interest.

This site uses cookies. Some of these cookies are essential, while others help us improve your experience by providing insights into how the site is being used.

For more detailed information on the cookies we use, please check our Privacy Policy.

Customise settings
  • Necessary cookies enable core functionality. The website cannot function properly without these cookies, and you can only disable them by changing your browser preferences.