Improvement in survival end points of patients with metastatic renal cell carcinoma through sequential targeted therapy

Survival of patients with metastatic renal cell carcinoma (mRCC) has improved since the advent of targeted therapy. Approved agents include the multi-targeted tyrosine kinase inhibitors (TKIs) sunitinib, sorafenib, axitinib, pazopanib, cabozantinib, and lenvatinib (approved in combination with everolimus), the anti-VEGF monoclonal antibody bevacizumab, the mammalian target of rapamycin (mTOR) inhibitors everolimus and temsirolimus, and the programmed death-1 (PD-1) targeted immune checkpoint inhibitor nivolumab. The identification of predictive and prognostic factors of survival is increasing, and both clinical predictive factors and pathology-related prognostic factors are being evaluated. Serum-based biomarkers and certain histologic subtypes of RCC, as well as clinical factors such as dose intensity and the development of some class effect adverse events, have been identified as predictors of survival. Expression levels of microRNAs, expression of chemokine receptor 4, hypermethylation of certain genes, VEGF polymorphisms, and elevation of plasma fibrinogen or d-dimer have been shown to be prognostic indicators of survival. In the future, prognosis and treatment of patients with mRCC might be based on genomic classification, especially of the 4 most commonly mutated genes in RCC (VHL, PBRM1, BAP1, and SETD2). Median overall survival has improved for patients treated with a first-line targeted agent compared with survival of patients treated with first-line interferon-α, and results of clinical trials have shown a survival benefit of sequential treatment with targeted agents. Prognosis of patients with mRCC will likely improve with optimization and individualization of current sequential treatment with targeted agents.

Cancer treatment reviews. 2016 Sep 10 [Epub ahead of print]

Emiliano Calvo, Manuela Schmidinger, Daniel Y C Heng, Viktor Grünwald, Bernard Escudier

Centro Integral Oncológico Clara Campal and START Madrid, Madrid, Spain. Electronic address: ., Medical University of Vienna, Vienna, Austria., Tom Baker Cancer Center, Calgary, Alberta, Canada., Hämatologie und Internistische Onkologie, Hannover, Germany., Institut Gustave Roussy, Villejuif, France.

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