Dr. West Discusses Latest Immunotherapy Findings in Lung Cancer

H. Jack West, MD

H. Jack West, MD, medical director of thoracic oncology, Swedish Cancer Institute of Swedish Medical Center, discusses the latest immunotherapy findings in lung cancer treatment.

West says there were several potentially practice-changing trials presented at the 2018 ASCO Annual Meeting, and the fact that oncologists now have a number of different options for patients is a “great problem to have.” He adds that it will be left up to physicians’ judgement and patients’ preferences to make optimal treatment decisions.

Data from the KEYNOTE-407 trial show that for patients with metastatic squamous non–small cell lung cancer (NSCLC), combining pembrolizumab (Keytruda) with conventional chemotherapy in the first-line setting could significantly improve median overall survival.

Pembrolizumab could eventually receive a broader FDA indication to become a frontline option for patients with NSCLC who do not harbor driver mutations, West says.

The IMpower131 study showed that atezolizumab (Tecentriq), an antibody that binds with PD-L1, paired with chemotherapy reduced the risk of disease progression or death by 29% compared with chemotherapy alone.
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