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Clinical utility of nivolumab in the treatment of advanced melanoma

Authors Asmar R, Yang J, Carvajal RD

Received 12 October 2015

Accepted for publication 21 December 2015

Published 26 February 2016 Volume 2016:12 Pages 313—325


Checked for plagiarism Yes

Review by Single-blind

Peer reviewers approved by Dr Hoa Le

Peer reviewer comments 2

Editor who approved publication: Professor Garry Walsh

Ramsey Asmar,1 Jessica Yang,1 Richard D Carvajal1,2

1Department of Medicine, College of Physicians and Surgeons, 2Herbert Irving Comprehensive Cancer Center, Columbia University, New York, NY, USA

Abstract: Melanomas are highly immunogenic tumors that evade the immune system by exploiting innate checkpoint pathways, rendering effector T-cells anergic. The immunotherapeutic approach of checkpoint inhibition can restore and invigorate endogenous antitumor T-cell responses and has become an important treatment option for patients with advanced melanoma. The CTLA-4 inhibitor ipilimumab and the PD-1 inhibitors nivolumab and pembrolizumab have been shown to induce durable responses and improve overall survival in metastatic, refractory melanoma. Optimization and validation of pretreatment biomarkers to predict response to these agents is a crucial area of ongoing research. Combination immunotherapy has recently demonstrated superior response rates compared to monotherapy; further investigation is needed to refine combinatorial strategies.

Keywords: nivolumab, immune checkpoint inhibitors, PD-1, melanoma

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