New Checkpoint Inhibitor Approvals for Non-Small Cell Lung Cancer
In the last few years, the number of therapies available for the treatment of metastatic non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC) has drastically increased. Many of these new drugs have shown increased response rates over previous standard-of-care therapies. For patients without oncogenic drivers, checkpoint inhibitors have emerged as the treatment of choice.
Recently, new checkpoint inhibitor regimens were approved for the first-line treatment of patients with metastatic NSCLC. Based on CheckMate-227, one combination was approved for patients whose tumors express PD-L1 (≥1%) while the combination with limited chemotherapy was approved regardless of PD-L1 expression based on CheckMate-9LA. Furthermore, based on IMpower110, a monotherapy was approved for patients with high PD-L1 expression (>50%).
There have also been novel challenges for providers due to the COVID-19 pandemic. A number of regulatory bodies and research organizations have released guidance stating that, while it is important to maintain standard treatment of metastatic lung cancer, checkpoint inhibitor treatment schedules may be modified or delayed in order to reduce clinical visits.
How do you expect your practices to change in the future as a result of the new checkpoint inhibitor approvals? How have your treatment and prescribing practices changed during the pandemic?