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Nivolumab in the Treatment of Metastatic Squamous Non-Small Cell Lung Cancer: a Review of the Evidence. (Ther Adv Respir Dis, Oct 2016)

Lim JS1, Soo RA2

1Cancer Science Institute of Singapore, National University of Singapore, Singapore.
2Department of Haematology-Oncology, National University Cancer Institute, National University Health System, 1E Kent Ridge Road, NUHS Tower Block Level 7, Singapore 119228


Progress in the treatment of patients with advanced stage squamous cell non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC) has been limited. An improvement in the understanding of tumor immunosurveillance has resulted in the development of the immune checkpoint inhibitors such as nivolumab. Nivolumab (Opdivo(®)), a human immunoglobulin (Ig)G4 anti-programmed death (PD)-1 monoclonal antibody, was the first PD-1 inhibitor approved in the treatment of patients with advanced stage squamous cell NSCLC following platinum-based chemotherapy. CHECKMATE 017, a randomized phase III study of second-line nivolumab versus docetaxel, significantly improved overall survival (OS), progression-free survival (PFS), patient reported outcomes and the safety and tolerability favored patients treated with nivolumab. The ligand (PD-L1) expression did not predict for outcome. In this paper, we review the role of nivolumabin the treatment of NSCLC with particular attention on recent studies, ongoing combination studies, toxicity profile, current and potential predictive biomarkers.

KEYWORDS: anti-programmed death-1; immunotherapy; nivolumab; non-small cell lung cancer

PMID: 27480166