On May 26, 2020, the Food and Drug Administration approved the combination of nivolumab plus ipilimumab and 2 cycles of platinum-doublet chemotherapy as first-line treatment for patients with metastatic or recurrent non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC), with no epidermal growth factor receptor (EGFR) or anaplastic lymphoma kinase (ALK) genomic tumour aberrations.
Efficacy was investigated in CHECKMATE-9LA (NCT03215706), a randomised, open-label trial in patients with metastatic or recurrent NSCLC.
Patients were randomised to receive either the combination of nivolumab plus ipilimumab and 2 cycles of platinum-doublet chemotherapy (n=361) or platinum-doublet chemotherapy for 4 cycles (n=358).
The trial demonstrated a statistically significant benefit in overall survival (OS) for patients treated with nivolumab plus ipilimumab plus chemotherapy compared to those who received chemotherapy.
Median OS was 14.1 months (95% CI: 13.2, 16.2) versus 10.7 months (95% CI: 9.5, 12.5), HR 0.69; 96.71% CI: 0.55, 0.87).
Median progression-free survival (PFS) per blinded independent central review (BICR) was 6.8 months (95% CI: 5.6, 7.7) in the nivolumab plus ipilimumab and chemotherapy arm and 5 months (95% CI: 4.3, 5.6) in the chemotherapy arm (HR 0.70; 95% CI: 0.57, 0.86).
Confirmed overall response rate (ORR) per BICR was 38% (95% CI: 33, 43) and 25% (95% CI: 21, 30) respectively.
Median response duration was 10 months in the nivolumab plus ipilimumab and chemotherapy arm, and 5.1 months in the chemotherapy arm.
The most common adverse reactions in ≥20% of patients receiving nivolumab in combination with ipilimumab and platinum-doublet chemotherapy were fatigue, musculoskeletal pain, nausea, diarrhoea, rash, decreased appetite, constipation, and pruritus.
The recommended nivolumab dose for this indication is 360 mg every 3 weeks with ipilimumab 1 mg/kg every 6 weeks and 2 cycles of platinum-doublet chemotherapy.
The nivolumab and ipilimumab is continued until disease progression, unacceptable toxicity, or up to 2 years in patients without disease progression.
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