Dr. Petrylak on Novel Immunotherapy Research in Bladder Cancer

Daniel P. Petrylak, MD
Published: Tuesday, Jan 03, 2017



Daniel P. Petrylak, MD, professor of Medicine and Urology, Yale Cancer Center, discusses the recent explosion of immunotherapy research in the treatment landscape of bladder cancer.

According to Petrylak, bladder cancer research hardly received any attention at all just a few years ago. Now, with the FDA approval of atezolizumab (Tecentriq), excitement continues to flourish regarding the investigation if immune checkpoint inhibitors in the treatment of this disease. Several first- and second-line trials are currently evaluating such agents, he says.

Petrylak also discusses the lack of data comparing immunotherapy agents nivolumab (Opdivo) and pembrolizumab (Keytruda) in bladder cancer. Thus far, marker studies have yet to adequately inform oncologists about which patients should receive one drug or the other. Moreover, there is also a lack of sequential trials. For example, if a patient with bladder cancer fails on atezolizumab, it is not yet clear if that patient would potentially respond to pembrolizumab—or vice versa. Future research in this space is warranted.


Daniel P. Petrylak, MD, professor of Medicine and Urology, Yale Cancer Center, discusses the recent explosion of immunotherapy research in the treatment landscape of bladder cancer.

According to Petrylak, bladder cancer research hardly received any attention at all just a few years ago. Now, with the FDA approval of atezolizumab (Tecentriq), excitement continues to flourish regarding the investigation if immune checkpoint inhibitors in the treatment of this disease. Several first- and second-line trials are currently evaluating such agents, he says.

Petrylak also discusses the lack of data comparing immunotherapy agents nivolumab (Opdivo) and pembrolizumab (Keytruda) in bladder cancer. Thus far, marker studies have yet to adequately inform oncologists about which patients should receive one drug or the other. Moreover, there is also a lack of sequential trials. For example, if a patient with bladder cancer fails on atezolizumab, it is not yet clear if that patient would potentially respond to pembrolizumab—or vice versa. Future research in this space is warranted.



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