Nivolumab in combination with cabozantinib is in development for first-line treatment of metastatic renal cell carcinoma (mRCC). Renal cell carcinoma is the most common form of cancer that originates in the kidney. It may occur due to the mutation of cells in the kidney’s filtering system. RCC often has few symptoms, so may be diagnosed quite late, and tend to spread to other organs quite early. There are many types of RCCs and each type is derived from a different cell lineage and has its own distinct characteristics. In mRCC, the tumour has spread beyond the regional lymph nodes to other parts of the body.
Nivolumab works by improving the activity of white blood cells thereby increasing the ability of the immune system to kill cancer cells. Cabozantinib works to stop signals that cancer cells use to divide and grow. It is thought that when used in combination, both drugs may be more effective than each drug on its own. If licenced, nivolumab in combination with cabozantinib may improve long-term outcomes in mRCC patients who currently have limited treatment options.
Nivolumab and ipilimumab are immune therapy medicinal products that are currently licensed as a combination treatment of advanced cancers such as melanoma and kidney cancer. Nivolumab works by improving the activity of white blood cells (T-cells) thereby increasing the ability of the immune system to kill cancer cells. Ipilimumab works in a different way but also to increase the activity of T-cells. It is thought that when used together, both drugs may be more effective than each on its own. Both drugs given by injection and the combination may offer a treatment option for patients with advanced, recurrent or metastatic oesophageal squamous cell carcinoma who have not been treated previously.