the myCME.com take:
Two immunotherapy drugs show promise in treating patients with Hodgkin lymphoma, according to results of two phase 1 trials to be presented at the 56th Annual Meeting of the American Society of Hematology (ASH) in San Francisco, CA.
Immunotherapy – the use of drugs that help the patient’s immune system fight the disease – is a relatively new approach to fighting cancer, and these results present more positive evidence that they can be effective while causing few or no serious side effects. Here’s what you need to know:
- Two PD-1 inhibitors—pembrolizumab and nivolumab—effectively induced complete response and/or partial remission in patients with classical Hodgkin lymphoma who failed to respond to other treatments in two separate studies.
- Study #1 of pembrolizumab: After 12 weeks, six of 12 patients (21%) showed a complete response and 13 patients (45%) showed partial remission. No serious side effects were reported, and one patient stopped treatment after a moderate adverse effect.
- Study #2 of nivolumab: After 24 weeks, four patients (17%) showed a completed response and 16 (70%) showed partial remission. Three serious side effects were reported.
- According to Dr. Alexander M. Lesokhin, a medical oncologist at MSK and co-lead investigator of the nivolumab study , “These data are the first to be reported for a completed study of a PD-1 inhibitor in classical Hodgkin lymphoma. This is good news for Hodgkin lymphoma patients and for the advancement of immunotherapies."