Further results from the ongoing CheckMate 214 phase III study have been released. In this study, 550 patients with advanced renal cell carcinoma (RCC) were randomised to receive ipilimumab plus nivolumab and 546 were randomised to be treated with sunitinib.
Patients with intermediate- or poor-risk RCC responded well to ipilimumab plus nivolumab and progression-free and overall survivals were increased compared with sunitinib. These patients also had an increased objective response rate with ipilimumab plus nivolumab. In all patient risk groups (favourable, intermediate and poor) more patients achieved complete response and the duration of response was longer with ipilimumab plus nivolumab compared with sunitinib. Safety of the ipilimumab plus nivolumab combination was similar as in previous studies.
In conclusion, these findings support the first-line use of ipilimumab plus nivolumab in this patient population, although the favourable-risk group of patients is small and further investigation is needed.