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Expert Point of View: Siwen Hu-Lieskovan, MD, PhD


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Formal discussant of KEYNOTE-555, Siwen Hu-Lieskovan, MD, PhD, of Huntsman Cancer Institute, Salt Lake City, commented on the advantages of the new schedule. “Along with the promise of prolonged survival associated with checkpoint inhibitors, convenience, quality of life, and reducing health-care costs become important issues.” She also said a new dosing schedule is now approved for nivolumab, going from weight-based dosing to a 240-mg every-2-week schedule to a 480-mg every-4-week schedule.

Siwen Hu-Lieskovan, MD, PhD

Siwen Hu-Lieskovan, MD, PhD

Dr. Hu-Lieskovan noted: “This study is the first one testing safety and efficacy [of this schedule] in the induction phase of anti-[programmed cell death protein 1] therapy. Previous trials focused on the maintenance phase (switching to a higher-dose/longer-interval regimen after initial treatment with a lower-dose/shorter-interval regimen).”

Although Dr. Hu-Lieskovan was pleased with the advantages of the new pembrolizumab dosing schedule, she said she would like to see more details about the adverse events. “The long-term impact of a lower minimum concentration and higher maximum concentration on efficacy, safety, and overall survival needs to be determined.” 

DISCLOSURE: Dr. Hu-Lieskovan has served as a consultant or advisor to Amgen, Bristol-Myers Squibb, Genmab, Guidepoint Global, and Merck; and has received institutional research funding from Astellas Pharma, Bristol-Myers Squibb, Neon Therapeutics, Vaccinex, and Xencor.

 


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