PD-L1 Status Can Not Be Used To Determine Immunotherapy Eligibility for Melanoma Treatment

MedicalResearch.com Interview with:

Michael A. Postow, MD Medical Oncologist Louis V. Gerstner, Jr. Graduate School of Biomedical Sciences (GSK) Memorial Sloan Kettering

Dr. Michael Postow

Michael A. Postow, MD
Medical Oncologist
Louis V. Gerstner, Jr. Graduate School of Biomedical Sciences (GSK)
Memorial Sloan Kettering

MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? What are the main findings?

Dr. Postow: Pembrolizumab has been shown to improve overall survival for patients with advanced melanoma compared to ipilimumab.  Patients with PD-L1 negative tumors still respond to pembrolizumab.  Responses to pembrolizumab were higher when patients had more PD-L1 in the tumor.

MedicalResearch.com: What should clinicians and patients take away from your report?

Dr. Postow: PD-L1 status cannot be used to select patients with melanoma to receive pembrolizumab vs. ipilimumab or even to be used to determine eligibility for immunotherapy in general.  PD-L1 “positivity” is a difficult definition and various cutoff points have been used in various studies to determine positivity.  We need more research to determine the significance of various cutoff definitions of “positive.”

MedicalResearch.com: What recommendations do you have for future research as a result of this study?

Dr. Postow: We need to study additional immunologic biomarkers, in addition to PD-L1, to see if they can improve our understanding of who responds to immunotherapy and why.

 

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