Dr. Rudin on Significance of the KEYNOTE-021 in Patients With NSCLC

Charles M. Rudin, MD, PhD

Charles M. Rudin, MD, PhD, chief, Thoracic Oncology Service, co-director, Druckenmiller Center for Lung Cancer Research, Sylvia Hassenfeld Chair in Lung Cancer Research, Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center, discusses the caveats of the KEYNOTE-021 trial.

KEYNOTE-021 cohort G was one arm of a very large trial that enrolled patients with previously untreated metastatic non–small cell lung cancer (NSCLC). That study was the first to look at the role of first-line chemotherapy plus immunotherapy for NSCLC. The results suggested that chemotherapy with immune-oncology drugs was better than chemotherapy alone.

Some of the caveats of the trial are that it was a small trial that was powered to look at survival. The progression-free survival curves seemed to favor the immunotherapy arm, but the trials were really designed with a primary endpoint of response rate. Ultimately, the phase III data need to be seen before it can be established as a standard of care, says Rudin. 
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