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This search function provides links to outputs produced by NIHR Innovation Observatory. These are briefing notes or reports on new or repurposed technologies. This search will not return all technologies currently in development as these outputs are produced as required for our stakeholders.

Innovation Observatory > Reports > Drugs > Pembrolizumab for recurrent or metastatic nasopharyngeal cancer

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Pembrolizumab for recurrent or metastatic nasopharyngeal cancer

Drugs

Cancer and Palliative Care

January 2021


Pembrolizumab is in clinical development for the treatment of patients with platinum pre-treated recurrent or metastatic nasopharyngeal cancer (NPC). NPC is a rare type of cancer that affects the part of the throat connecting the back of the nose to the back of the mouth (the pharynx). It is often difficult to distinguish the symptoms of NPC from less serious conditions and many people do not have any symptoms until the cancer reaches an advanced stage. Therefore, there is a medical need for effective treatments for advanced nasopharyngeal cancer.
Pembrolizumab is an immunotherapy drug administered by intravenous (IV) infusion. It works by improving the activity of white blood cells (T-cells) by blocking a protein, PD-L1, thereby increasing the ability of the immune system to kill cancer cells. If licenced, pembrolizumab could provide an additional treatment option for patients with platinum pre-treated recurrent or metastatic nasopharyngeal cancer.

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