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04-05-2021 | Oncology | News | Article

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KEYNOTE-189 final analysis confirms pembrolizumab nonsquamous NSCLC benefits

Lynda Williams

medwireNews: The addition of pembrolizumab to pemetrexed–paclitaxel chemotherapy provides durable survival advantages for treatment-naïve patients with metastatic, nonsquamous non-small-cell lung cancer (NSCLC), the final protocol-specified analysis of KEYNOTE-189 has confirmed.

Delvys Rodríguez-Abreu (Universidad de Las Palmas de Gran Canaria, Spain) and co-investigators report that after a median 31 months of follow-up, the 410 patients given the triple regimen “continued to show a long-term, clinically meaningful survival benefit” compared with the 206 patients given chemotherapy plus placebo, with significant hazard ratios (HRs) for progression-free and overall survival of 0.49 and 0.56, respectively.

These outcomes occurred despite 55.8% of the control arm crossing over to PD-1 or PD-L1 therapy, and the long-term benefits of pembrolizumab were further demonstrated by a significant improvement versus placebo for time to second or subsequent tumor progression on the next treatment line (HR=0.50).

Of note, 94.6% of the 56 patients who completed all 35 cycles of pembrolizumab were alive at data cutoff after a median 31.5 months, and the objective response rate was 85.7% in this group, the team writes in the Annals of Oncology.

“Our results support use of pembrolizumab plus pemetrexed-platinum as a standard-of-care therapy for patients with newly diagnosed metastatic nonsquamous NSCLC, irrespective of PD-L1 [tumor proportion score],” the investigators conclude.

medwireNews is an independent medical news service provided by Springer Healthcare Ltd. © 2020 Springer Healthcare Ltd, part of the Springer Nature Group

Ann Oncol; doi:10.1016/j.annonc.2021.04.008

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