Emerging Role of Immunotherapy in Advanced Urothelial Carcinoma.

Advanced urothelial carcinoma (aUC) has long been treated preferably with cisplatin-based chemotherapy, but many patients are cisplatin-ineligible whereas for those who progress on a platinum-based regimen treatment options are limited. We review key recent data regarding immune checkpoint inhibitors that are changing this treatment landscape.

Since May 2016, five different agents targeting the PD-1/PD-L1 pathway (atezolizumab, pembrolizumab, nivolumab, avelumab, durvalumab) have received FDA approval for the treatment of aUC in the platinum-refractory setting, while pembrolizumab and atezolizumab are FDA-approved for cisplatin-ineligible patients in the first-line setting. Clinical outcomes and safety profiles of these agents appear relatively comparable across separate trials; however, only pembrolizumab is supported by level I evidence from a large randomized phase III trial showing overall survival benefit over conventional cytotoxic salvage chemotherapy in the platinum-refractory setting. Pembrolizumab has the highest level of evidence in platinum-refractory aUC, whereas pembrolizumab and atezolizumab have comparable level of evidence in the frontline setting in cisplatin-ineligible patients. Ongoing research is evaluating novel agents, various rational combinations, and sequences, as well as predictive and prognostic biomarkers.

Current oncology reports. 2018 Apr 11*** epublish ***

Vadim S Koshkin, Petros Grivas

Cleveland Clinic Taussig Cancer Institute, 9500 Euclid Ave, Desk CA-60, Cleveland, OH, 44195, USA., Department of Medicine, Division of Oncology, Seattle Cancer Care Alliance, University of Washington and Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center, 825 Eastlake Ave E, MS: G4-830, Seattle, WA, 98109, USA. .

E-Newsletters

Newsletter subscription

Free Daily and Weekly newsletters offered by content of interest

The fields of GU Oncology and Urology are rapidly advancing. Sign up today for articles, videos, conference highlights and abstracts from peer-review publications by disease and condition delivered to your inbox and read on the go.

Subscribe