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Lenvatinib plus pembrolizumab has already been shown to improve survival compared to standard care with sunitinib as a first treatment for advanced kidney cancer after surgery in the phase 3 CLEAR study. More follow-up information has shown that this benefit continues.
Untreated patients with clear-cell advanced kidney cancer were randomly allocated lenvatinib plus pembrolizumab, lenvatinib plus everolimus, or sunitinib (355 patients, 357 patients, and 357 patients, respectively). The results from the lenvatinib plus everolimus group were not reported.
Patients were followed for nearly 3 years. The average time for when the treatment stopped working and the cancer started growing again (progression-free survival) was 23.3 and 9.2 months in the lenvatinib plus pembrolizumab group and sunitinib group, respectively. Average overall survival time was improved with lenvatinib plus pembrolizumab versus sunitinib.
“This extended follow-up analysis shows the durable and clinically meaningful efficacy benefit with lenvatinib plus pembrolizumab over sunitinib,” said the researchers. “Previously observed benefits in overall survival, progression-free survival, and objective response rate were maintained.”