FDA Approves Nivolumab (Opdivo) for Small Cell Lung Cancer

The US Meals and Drug Administration (FDA) has authorised nivolumab (Opdivo, Bristol-Myers Squibb) for the therapy of sufferers with metastatic small cell lung most cancers (SCLC) whose most cancers has progressed after platinum-based chemotherapy and at the very least one different line of remedy, in accordance with the corporate.
Nivolumab was granted accelerated approval for this indication on the premise of general response price and period of response; as such, additional proof of profit in confirmatory trials could also be required to determine full approval.

Till now, there have been no accepted or FDA-approved regimens for sufferers with SCLC whose illness has progressed after first- and second-line therapies, in accordance with specialists.
Nivolumab turns into the primary new drug in practically 20 years for this affected person group, in accordance with the corporate.

“Today’s approval of nivolumab is particularly exciting, considering it is the first checkpoint inhibitor approved for these specific patients, and now we can finally treat this devastating disease from a different angle,” mentioned Leora Horn, MD, director of the thoracic oncology program, Vanderbilt College Medical Middle in Nashville, Tennessee, within the firm assertion.

The approval was primarily based on efficacy and security knowledge from the part half CheckMate-032 trial. In that trial, 109 sufferers acquired nivolumab after platinum-based chemotherapy and at the very least one different prior line of remedy, and 12% responded (n = 13/109; 95% confidence interval [CI], 6.5 – 19.5).
Of the 13 sufferers who responded, 12 had a partial response (11%), and one had a whole response (zero.9%). On this group, the median period of response was 17.9 months (95% CI, 7.9 – 42.1; vary, three.zero – 42.1 months).
Sufferers acquired nivolumab three mg/kg by intravenous infusion over 60 min each 2 weeks till illness development or unacceptable toxicity. The primary tumor assessments have been performed 6 weeks after the primary dose and have been continued each 6 weeks for the primary 24 weeks and each 12 weeks thereafter.

Nivolumab’s security was evaluated within the 245 sufferers with SCLC enrolled within the CheckMate trial who skilled illness development after platinum-based chemotherapy. Critical opposed reactions occurred in 45% of sufferers. Essentially the most frequent critical opposed reactions (≥2% of sufferers) have been pneumonia, dyspnea, pneumonitis, pleural effusion, and dehydration.
The commonest opposed reactions (≥20% of sufferers) have been fatigue (45%), decreased urge for food (27%), musculoskeletal ache (25%), dyspnea (22%), nausea (22%), diarrhea (21%), constipation (20%), and cough (20%).
SCLC at present accounts for 14% of all lung cancers, or roughly 30,000 sufferers yearly, in accordance with a 2015 overview article (Clin Most cancers Res.2015;21:2244-55). General 5-year survival charges in the USA are a “dismal” 6%, in accordance with the overview authors, led by M. Catherine Pietanza, MD, of Memorial Sloan Kettering Most cancers Middle and Weill Cornell Medication, New York Metropolis.
These specialists observe that first-line platinum-based chemotherapy for SCLC yields optimum tumor response charges as excessive as 60% to 80% however ends in treatment solely in roughly 20% of sufferers with limited-stage SCLC. Most sufferers endure relapse inside months of finishing preliminary remedy, in accordance with the overview authors. Additionally they level out that topotecan (Hycamtin, Novartis) is the one FDA-approved agent for recurrent or progressive SCLC (ie, second-line therapy) and that as of 2015, no remedy had been accepted as commonplace after topotecan failure.

Nivolumab can be indicated for the therapy of sufferers with metastatic non–small cell lung most cancers who expertise illness development throughout or after platinum-based chemotherapy. Sufferers who’ve EGFR or ALK genomic tumor aberrations shouldn’t obtain nivolumab till they’ve skilled illness development on FDA-approved remedy for these aberrations, in accordance with the corporate.

Comply with Medscape senior journalist Nick Mulcahy on Twitter: @MulcahyNick

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