Home News & Events News BLOG: June is Cancer Immunotherapy Month

What is immunotherapy?

This month is Cancer Immunotherapy Month. It’s an annual global awareness and education programme that shares information about this new type of cancer treatment. As you’ll discover, more types of immunotherapy are being developed all the time as researchers look for promising new cancer treatments.

Immunotherapy is different from other types of cancer treatment because it uses the body’s own immune system to identify and fight cancer cells. It’s the standard treatment for certain cancers such as melanoma.

It is also being trialled for other types, but it’s not right for everyone. Immunotherapy can be used alone or alongside other treatments such as chemotherapy. Some types of immunotherapy are also known as ‘targeted treatments,’ or ‘biological therapies’.

Using immunotherapy as part of cancer treatment can give the immune system the right defences to work more effectively against cancer. Read more about how immunotherapy works.

During June, various educational and social events have been organised to raise global awareness of the treatment. These include:

  • Thursday 4th June - Blog: ASCO 2020 Recap - an opportunity for healthcare professionals to learn more about the latest research and innovations in immunotherapy.
  • Sunday 7th June is National Cancer Survivors Day® - a celebration for people who have come through cancer and want to help inspire and support those recently diagnosed, their families and communities.
  • Friday 12th June - Wear White for a Future Immune to Cancer:  to join in just wear any white outfit, make a sign to explain why, and take a selfie or group photo with the sign. Then share your photo, using #Immune2Cancer, on your social media (Twitter, Instagram, Facebook, LinkedIn or YouTube).
  • Wednesday 24th June - Understanding Genomics and Genetic Testing in Cancer Immunotherapy: this is a webinar aimed at patients and carers; experts will discuss genetic testing for cancer as well as the latest developments in genome-based medicine.

Further Information and stories

And throughout June, you can read patient stories about their experiences of immunotherapy treatment. These include Oswald’s Immunotherapy Story, an account of his treatment for Stage 4 non-small cell lung cancer – today he is cancer-free. And Debbie’s Story about being treated with immunotherapy for Stage 4 kidney cancer. You can also take the Cancer Immunotherapy Quiz to test yourself on different aspects of the science, history, development and impact of cancer immunotherapy.

Find out more about Cancer Immunotherapy Month, including how to get involved, at the Cancer Research Institute.

Your medical team will work with you to decide the right treatment for you, whether that includes immunotherapy, chemotherapy or a combination of cancer treatments. If you have any questions about these treatments, please contact the team at Rutherford Cancer Centres.

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