Dr. Vaishampayan on Axitinib Plus Pembrolizumab in Advanced RCC

August 27, 2020
Ulka N. Vaishampayan, MBBS, FAB

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Ulka N. Vaishampayan, MBBS, FAB, discusses the benefit of axitinib and pembrolizumab in advanced renal cell carcinoma.

Ulka N. Vaishampayan, MBBS, FAB, director of the Phase I program at the Rogel Cancer Center and a professor of internal medicine at the University of Michigan, discusses the benefit of axitinib (Inlyta) and pembrolizumab (Keytruda) in advanced renal cell carcinoma (RCC).

Updated results from the phase 3 KEYNOTE-426 trial showed that at 24 months of follow-up, patients who were given axitinib/pembrolizumab still experienced an improvement in survival, says Vaishampayan. The 2-year overall survival rate for patients who received sunitinib (Sutent) was 66% versus 74% of those who received the combination. The difference in benefit continues to be statistically significant, and as such, the immunotherapy-based regimen is still considered as the frontline therapy of choice for patients with RCC. adds Vaishampayan.

However, when looking at the International Metastatic RCC Database risk criteria, the favorable-risk subgroup did not show a benefit with axitinib/pembrolizumab; both arms experienced relatively similar outcomes. In the intermediate- and poor-risk subgroup, the difference remained and favored the axitinib/pembrolizumab regimen, concludes Vaishampayan.