(EUROPEAN SOCIETY FOR MEDICAL ONCOLOGY) According to a recent press release, immunotherapy has shown promising results in first and second line treatment of metastatic bladder cancer in two phase II trials presented at the ESMO 2016 Congress in Copenhagen.
Up to half of patients with metastatic bladder cancer are not eligible for survival prolonging first line treatment with cisplatin-based chemotherapy. Survival in these patients is just nine to ten months with currently available alternative chemotherapy.
The phase II KEYNOTE-052 trial1 evaluated the efficacy and safety of PD-1 blockade with pembrolizumab as first line therapy in cisplatin ineligible patients with metastatic or locally advanced bladder cancer. Today researchers presented the preliminary analysis of the first 100 patients enrolled in the trial. The primary endpoint of objective response rate was 24%. The biomarker cut point to identify patients who are most likely to respond to the drug was determined to be 10% or greater total PD-L1 expression in immune cells or tumour cells. Thirty patients had this level of expression of whom 11 (37%) responded to treatment. The median duration of response has not yet been reached and treatment was well tolerated.