In a nutshell
This study evaluated the effectiveness and safety outcomes of atezolizumab (Tecentriq) given before surgery for the treatment of patients with non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC). The data showed that atezolizumab given before surgery was safe and effective for patients with NSCLC.
Non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC) is the most common form of lung cancer. NSCLC is responsible for around 85% of all lung cancer diagnoses. Standard treatment for advanced NSCLC involves surgical removal of solid tumors, chemotherapy, and radiotherapy.
Immunotherapy has been found to be effective in advanced NSCLC. PD-L1 is a protein that can be found in high numbers on cancer cells. It shuts down the immune system so that cancer cells can grow and spread without detection. Atezolizumab is an immunotherapy that targets PD-L1. Blocking PD-L1 restores the capacity of the immune system to attack and kill cancer cells. Most patients have been treated with atezolizumab after surgery. However, the effectiveness and safety of first-line treatment with atezolizumab given before surgery in patients with NSCLC are still unknown.
Methods & findings
This study involved 143 patients with stage IB-IIIB NSCLC. All patients received atezolizumab alone before surgery. The main outcome was a major pathological response (MPR). MPR was defined as a volume of 10% or less of tumor cells remaining. The average follow-up time was 3 years.
The percentage of patients who achieved MPR was 20%. The complete response (CR; complete disappearance of cancer cells) was 6%.
After 3 years, the overall survival rate was 80%. The most common side effects were fatigue (39%) and pain (29%).
The bottom line
This study concluded that atezolizumab alone given before surgery was safe and effective for patients with NSCLC.
The fine print
This study was funded by Genentech, the manufacturer of atezolizumab. There was no control group. Larger studies are needed.
Published By :
Sep 12, 2022