SEP 20, 2020 8:30 AM PDT

New Drug Combo Prolongs Survival with Advanced Kidney Cancer

WRITTEN BY: Annie Lennon

Biopharmaceutical company Bristol-Myers Squibb has found that a new drug combination can reduce death rates among those with advanced kidney cancer. 

During trials, immunotherapy drug Opdivo and kinase inhibitor Cabometyx were shown to reduce the risk of death by kidney cancer by 40% when compared to Sutent, also a kinase inhibitor, and the former standard of care by Pfizer. Patients on the combination lived twice as long without their cancer progressing- an average of 16.6 months as opposed to 8.3 months for those on Sutent. 

More than this, twice as many patients on Opdivo-Cabometyx responded to the treatment and saw long-lasting effects. While 27% of trial patients responded to Sutent, 56% benefited from the new drug combination. All in all, those on the combo responded for a median of 20.2 months, whereas those on Sutent responded for a median of 11.5 months. 

As such, Bristol Myers is currently in the process of gaining the treatment FDA approval for the treatment and is advocating its use among those with advanced kidney cancer.  

Although promising, the new drug combination seems to have similar efficacy to Merck’s own drug combination- Keytruda, an immunotherapy drug, and Inlya, a kinase inhibitor by Pfizer. Together, these drugs were able to cut the risk of death by between 41% and 46% among patients with the condition. 

“The various combination treatments will unlikely be compared head-to-head,” says Toni Choueiri, MD of Dana-Farbar Cancer Institute and author of the Opdivo-Cabometyx trial. “But I think the quality of life could differentiate this new therapy, as there was a statistical significance favoring the combination arm with both questionnaires we used.”

Despite the optimism, many in the medical community are still uncertain as to whether treating cancer with two immunotherapies or immunotherapy alongside a kinase-inhibiting drug is better. However, as both seem to have similar effectiveness, some say that both should nevertheless be seen as a standard of care for first-line patients. 

 

Sources: Fierce PharmaSTAT

About the Author
  • Science writer with keen interests in technology and behavioral biology. Her current focus is on the interplay between these fields to create meaningful interactions, applications and environments.
You May Also Like
AUG 12, 2020
Drug Discovery & Development
Fast Tracking Drug Therapies
AUG 12, 2020
Fast Tracking Drug Therapies
Fast-tracking drugs in a safe and effective way can eventually save the lives of many from life-threatening diseases. Ne ...
SEP 11, 2020
Drug Discovery & Development
Novel Therapeutic for ALS
SEP 11, 2020
Novel Therapeutic for ALS
The TDP-43 protein is a well-known hallmark of amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) and frontotemporal dementia (FTD). A ...
SEP 22, 2020
Drug Discovery & Development
New Treatment for Mouth-Hand-Foot Disease
SEP 22, 2020
New Treatment for Mouth-Hand-Foot Disease
A study appearing next week in the journal Nature Communications offers some good news in the search for antiviral drugs ...
OCT 21, 2020
Drug Discovery & Development
New ALS Treatment Extends Life for Several Months
OCT 21, 2020
New ALS Treatment Extends Life for Several Months
Currently, there are only two approved medications to treat Lou Gehrig's disease (also known as ALS), a condition po ...
OCT 21, 2020
Microbiology
The First Treatment for Ebola is Approved by FDA
OCT 21, 2020
The First Treatment for Ebola is Approved by FDA
Ebola virus can pass from animals to humans, and between people. Rarely, it causes outbreaks but when it does, they can ...
OCT 22, 2020
Neuroscience
Placebos Impact Brain Patterns for Emotional Processing
OCT 22, 2020
Placebos Impact Brain Patterns for Emotional Processing
Researchers from Michigan State University have found that placebos reduce markers of emotional distress- even when the ...
Loading Comments...