publication date: Sep. 22, 2016

Melanoma Two-drug Immunotherapy May Produce Better Survival in Advanced Melanoma

Combining two immunotherapy drugs upfront for advanced melanoma appears to increase the two-year survival rate over that achieved with a single agent, according to an analysis of results from a multi-center phase II clinical trial, scientists report.

In a group of patients who received both nivolumab (Opdivo) and ipilimumab (Yervoy), the two-year survival rate was 63.8 percent compared to 53.6 percent treated with ipilimumab alone, reported researchers from Dana-Farber Cancer Institute and Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center.

The difference wasn’t statistically significant.

In a paper in The Lancet Oncology, the authors of the said the results suggest that the combination “might lead to improved outcomes compared with ipilimumab alone in patients with advanced melanoma.” Thus far, the median survival rate has not been reached in either treatment group.

The report represents the longest follow-up to date of patients with advanced melanoma who received the nivolumab-ipilimumab combination in a randomized clinical trial, say the authors. First author is F. Stephen Hodi, director of Dana-Farber’s Melanoma Center and its Center for Immuno-Oncology. The analysis of results from the CheckMate 069 phase II trial is based on results in 140 patients treated at 19 centers in the United States and France.

Both drugs target checkpoint molecules–protein switches that cancer cells can exploit to avoid … Continue reading CCL 39-08 Two-drug Immunotherapy May Produce Better Survival in Advanced Melanoma

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