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New Immunotherapy Drug Combination Tremelimumab-Durvalumab Could Help Mesothelioma Patients Live Longer

A recent study says a new immunotherapy drug combination could help mesothelioma patients live longer.

According to the study, one of the drugs, known as tremelimumab, initially showed good activity when used alone in patients with mesothelioma, but did not improve the overall survival of patients who failed on first-line or second-line chemotherapy compared with placebo in the DETERMINE study. When combined with another immunotherapy drug known as durvalumab (brand name Imfinzi), patients had a better response.

The yearlong study consisted of 40 mesothelioma patients. Each received at least one dose each of tremelimumab and durvalumab. Patients were followed-up for a median of 19.2 months. Twenty-eight percent of the 40 patients (11), had an immune-related objective response (all partial responses; confirmed in ten patients), with a median response duration of 16.1 months. Sixty-five percent of the 40 patients (26) had immune-related disease control and sixty-three percent (25) had disease control.

Median immune-related progression-free survival was eight months, median progression-free survival was 5.7 months, and median overall survival was 16.6 months. Baseline tumor PD-L1 expression did not correlate with the proportion of patients who had an immune-related objective response or immune-related disease control, with immune-related progression-free survival, or with overall survival. Seventy-five percent (30) of the 40 patients experienced treatment-related adverse events of any grade, of whom 18% (seven) had grade 3–4 treatment-related adverse events. Treatment-related toxicity was generally manageable and reversible with protocol guidelines.

Based on the findings, the study team concluded that the combination of tremelimumab and durvalumab appeared active, with a good safety profile in patients with mesothelioma, warranting further exploration.

If you have been diagnosed with mesothelioma, talk to your doctor about innovative immunotherapy treatment combinations such as tremelimumab-durvalumab. Developing treatments such as this could be helpful in treating your specific type of mesothelioma, so talk to your doctor about all of your options today.



Calabro, Luana, Aldo Morra, and Diana Giannerelli. "Tremelimumab Combined with Durvalumab in Patients with Mesothelioma (NIBIT-MESO-1): An Open-label, Non-randomised, Phase 2 Study." The Lancet Respiratory Medicine. The Lancet, Elsevier Limited, 14 May 2018. Web. 19 July 2018.

“NCI Drug Dictionary.” National Cancer Institute (NCI). U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS), National Institutes of Health (NIH), 2018. Web. 19 July 2018.