Bassam Sonbol, MD, discusses the role of pembrolizumab in the treatment of patients with gastric cancer.
Bassam Sonbol, MD, an oncologist at Mayo Clinic Arizona, discusses the role of pembrolizumab (Keytruda) in the treatment of patients with gastric cancer.
The role of the agent in the treatment of patients with gastric cancer has been examined over the last few years, according to Sonbol. Initially, use of pembrolizumab was limited to the third-line setting, but recently, the FDA’s Oncologic Drugs Advisory Committee voted against maintaining the accelerated approval of the agent for the treatment of patients with PD-L1–positive, recurrent or advanced gastric or gastroesophageal junction adenocarcinoma who have received 2 or more lines of therapy, Sonbol says.
In the frontline setting, pembrolizumab was also examined with or without chemotherapy vs chemotherapy alone in the phase 3 KEYNOTE-062 trial (NCT02494583), Sonbol notes. Overall, the study yielded negative results. Although pembrolizumab monotherapy was non-inferior to chemotherapy, it was also not superior. As such, it is not often utilized as a monotherapy, especially in patients who are microsatellite stable, Sonbol concludes.