Study Drug Plus Immunotherapy May Offer New Treatment Option for Lung and Kidney Cancer

January 28, 2020 by Elisa Becze BA, ELS, Editor

Pegilodecakin, an investigational, first-in-class drug currently in clinical trials, is demonstrating positive safety results and measurable responses when used in combination with pembrolizumab or nivolumab in patients with non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC) or kidney cancer. The findings from the multicenter, phase IB study were published in Lancet Oncology (

Researchers followed 111 patients with kidney cancer, NSCLC, or melanoma with advanced malignant solid tumors. They observed objective response rates in 43% of patients with NSCLC, 40% of those with kidney cancer, and 10% with melanoma. The most common side effects were anemia, fatigue, low blood platelet counts, and high triglycerides.

Pegilodecakin combines interleukin-10, a protein that stimulates CD8+ T cells, with polyethylene glycol, which prolongs its circulation in the body. The action complements the anti-PD-1 monoclonal antibodies that block immunosuppressive effects on T cells.

“The activity of pegilodecakin in combination with anti-PD-1 monoclonal antibodies introduces a new class of drugs to the treatment of advanced solid tumors,” the researchers said. They hope the drug can be used as a single and combination agent to treat a range of solid tumors.

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