Hodgkin Lymphoma: Combining Targeted Drug with Immunotherapy Shows Promise

Dr. Catherine S. M. Diefenbach MD Assistant Professor of Medicine NYU Cancer Center New York, NY 10016

Dr. Diefenbach

MedicalResearch.com Interview with:
Dr. Catherine S. M. Diefenbach MD

Assistant Professor of Medicine
NYU Langone
Laura and Isaac Perlmutter Cancer Center
New York, NY 10016 

Medical Research: What is the background for this study? What are the main findings?

Dr. Diefenbach: The background of the study is that through an understanding of the unique immunobiology of Hodgkin lymphoma we can derive rational treatment strategies which may heighten the efficacy of existing therapies, and improve the outcomes for patients with relapsed disease.  In E4412 which is a national study sponsored by the Eastern Cooperative Oncology Group (ECOG-ACRIN) we explore the safety and efficacy of combination of the antibody drug conjugate brentuximab vedotin which targets CD30 on the surface of the Hodgkin lymphoma tumor cells, and immune stimulation of the T cells in the tumor microenvironment using checkpoint inhibitors.  We reported the data from the first arm of the study Brentuximab Vedotin and Ipilimumab.  To date 23 patients with relapsed Hodgkin lymphoma have been treated; the combination of brentuximab and ipilimumab was safe and well tolerated with primarily grade 1 and 2 toxicities.  In 18 patients evaluable for response the ORR was 72% with a complete response rate of 50%.

Medical Research: What should clinicians and patients take away from your report?

Dr. Diefenbach: That the strategy of combining targeted therapies with immune activation is highly promising in Hodgkin lymphoma, and may have relevance for other lymphomas and other solid tumors.

Medical Research: What recommendations do you have for future research as a result of this study?

Dr. Diefenbach: This clinical trial is ongoing and accrual is now open at 14 centers nationwide for the combination of brentuximab vedotin and the checkpoint inhibitor Nivolumab.

Citation:

2015 ASH abstract: December 2015

Preliminary Safety and Efficacy of the Combination of Brentuximab Vedotin and Ipilimumab in Relapsed / Refractory Hodgkin Lymphoma: A Trial of the ECOG-ACRIN Cancer Research Group (E4412)

Lymphoma: Therapy with Biologic Agents, excluding Pre-Clinical Models
Program: Oral and Poster Abstracts
Type: Oral
Session: 624. Lymphoma: Therapy with Biologic Agents, excluding Pre-Clinical Models: Biologic Agents in Hodgkin Lymphoma

Monday, December 7, 2015: 11:00 AM

Dr. Catherine S. M. Diefenbach MD (2015). Hodgkin Lymphoma: Combined Targeted Drug with Immunotherapy Shows Promise 

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