Dr. Pavlick on Immunotherapy Clinical Trials in Basal and Squamous Cell Carcinomas

Anna C. Pavlick, DO
Published: Tuesday, Dec 20, 2016



Anna C. Pavlick, DO, medical oncologist, NYU Langone School of Medicine, discusses ongoing clinical trials exploring treatment with immunotherapy in patients with basal cell carcinoma as well as squamous cell carcinoma of the skin.

Frontline therapy for patients with basal cell carcinoma are hedgehog inhibitors, Pavlick explains. However, similar to the targeted therapies available for patients with melanoma, most patients do become resistant to these therapies. Therefore, since these patients are not chemotherapy-sensitive or radiation therapy-sensitive, a clinical trial is opening in the near future that will explore treatment with immunotherapy for those who fail on hedgehog inhibitors. If the results are promising, this could lead to a new frontline treatment option for these individuals.

Similar to squamous cell skin cancer, Pavlick says there is another clinical trial opening that will explore immunotherapy in this patient population, as well. This would be practice changing for the field, she explains.


Anna C. Pavlick, DO, medical oncologist, NYU Langone School of Medicine, discusses ongoing clinical trials exploring treatment with immunotherapy in patients with basal cell carcinoma as well as squamous cell carcinoma of the skin.

Frontline therapy for patients with basal cell carcinoma are hedgehog inhibitors, Pavlick explains. However, similar to the targeted therapies available for patients with melanoma, most patients do become resistant to these therapies. Therefore, since these patients are not chemotherapy-sensitive or radiation therapy-sensitive, a clinical trial is opening in the near future that will explore treatment with immunotherapy for those who fail on hedgehog inhibitors. If the results are promising, this could lead to a new frontline treatment option for these individuals.

Similar to squamous cell skin cancer, Pavlick says there is another clinical trial opening that will explore immunotherapy in this patient population, as well. This would be practice changing for the field, she explains.



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