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Study of ramucirumab plus pembrolizumab shows promise in NSCLC

October 10, 2016

In a phase I clinical trial, patients with previously treated advanced non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC) have showed initial response and disease control from the drug combination of ramucirumab and pembrolizumab. Roy S. Herbst, MD, PhD, Chief of Medical Oncology at Yale Cancer Center and Smilow Cancer Hospital at Yale New Haven, will present the interim data of the clinical trial at the European Society for Medical Oncology (ESMO) Congress today.

This is the first study to combine ramucirumab, a VEGFR2 antibody, with pembrolizumab, a PD-1 antibody, to target both angiogenesis and immunosuppression simultaneously. Individually, both drugs have shown clinical activity in multiple tumor types.

“The early data from the trial is very promising, showing disease control in 85% of the patients. The initial response from both PD-L1 positive and negative patients is encouraging as we look for new options for our patients with advanced lung cancer,” Dr. Herbst said. “Certainly this will require further study.”

27 patients with previously treated advanced NSCLC have received ramucirumab plus pembrolizumab. 8 patients had an objective response and reduction in tumor. Median time to response was 1.45 months; objective responses are still ongoing in all responders.

Interim safety and clinical activity in patients with advanced NSCLC from a multi-cohort phase 1 study of ramucirumab (R) plus pembrolizumab (P). Abstract 2428

Submitted by Renee Gaudette on October 09, 2016