The following article features coverage from the American Society of Clinical Oncology 2020 meeting. Click here to read more of Cancer Therapy Advisor‘s conference coverage.

Patients with advanced sarcoma who developed immune-related adverse events (irAEs) after immune checkpoint blockade were more likely to have a clinical benefit that those who did not develop irAEs, according to a study reported at the ASCO20 Virtual Scientific Program.

The study included 124 patients with advanced sarcoma from 3 trials, during which they were treated with immune checkpoint blockade. Trial participants received nivolumab plus NKTR-214 (ClinicalTrials.gov Identifier: NCT03282344), pembrolizumab plus epacadostat (ClinicalTrials.gov Identifier: NCT03414229), or pembrolizumab plus talimogene laherparepvec (NCT03069378).

Overall, 32% of patients developed an irAE, and 18% of patients who developed an irAE achieved a response, which was higher than the 6% response rate for patients who did not develop an irAE (P =.058). Patients who developed an irAE also had a higher durable clinical benefit (53% vs 29%; P =.017) and longer median progression-free survival (PFS; 16.4 vs 10.6 weeks; P =.013) than those who did not develop an irAE.

In addition, the severity of irAE appeared to be associated with outcomes.


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Patients who developed grade 3 or 4 irAEs had a more than doubled response rate (33%) compared with those who developed grade 1/2 (15%) or no irAEs (6%) (P =.048). Patients who developed grade 3/4 irAEs also had a higher durable clinical response (67%) than those who developed grade 1/2 (50%) or no irAEs (29%) (P =.027). Similarly, patients who developed grade 3 or 4 irAEs had a longer median PFS (22.6 weeks) than those who developed grade 1/2 irAEs (15 weeks) or no irAEs (10.6 weeks) (P =.047).

“Further research is needed to understand the mechanism behind this association and to validate these findings prospectively,” the study authors wrote.

Read more of Cancer Therapy Advisor‘s coverage of the ASCO 2020 meeting by visiting the conference page.

Reference

Rosenbaum E, Seier K, Kelly CM, et al. Association of immune-related adverse events (irAEs) with improved clinical outcome in sarcoma patients treated with immune checkpoint blockade (ICB). Presented at: ASCO20 Virtual Scientific Program. J Clin Oncol. 2020;38(suppl):abstr 11510.