Bristol’s New Anti-PD-1 Immunotherapy An ASCO High Point
Bristol-Myers Squibb’s “anti-PD-1,” an antibody that gets between immune system T-cells out to destroy cancer cells and a cancer defense mechanism that would tie them up, caught the fancy of attendees at the American Society of Clinical Oncology annual meeting in Chicago with Phase I data indicating the drug could be safer and more effective than Bristol’s breakthrough immunotherapeutic for melanoma, Yervoy.
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Merck plans to enrich its Phase II study for MK-3475 with patients whose tumors express PD-L1; Bristol would take all comers in its Phase I/II trial of nivolumab.
Lung cancer wasn’t viewed traditionally as a tumor that would respond to immunotherapy. But with checkpoint inhibitor data looking promising, big pharma is diving in and prioritizing the disease, reeled in by the large patient population and high unmet need.
Immune checkpoint antibodies feature prominently in American Society of Clinical Oncology annual meeting program, showing promise in a range of cancers. Bristol showcases data for Yervoy in combination with its anti-PD-1 nivolumab in melanoma, while Roche unveils extensive early results for its anti-PD-L1 MPDL3280A.