From the Journals

Phase 1 study: Human IL-10 plus checkpoint blockade looks promising in RCC, NSCLC


Key clinical point: IL-10 + anti-PD-1 therapy shows promise for RCC and NSCLC.

Major finding: 15 of 34 RCC patients had an objective response and two of those had a complete response.

Study details: Expansion cohorts including 64 patients from a phase 1 study.

Disclosures: Dr. Oft is a founder and employee of ARMO BioSciences, which sponsored this study.

Source: A. Naing et al. SITC 2017 Abstract 012.



– Pegylated human interleukin-10 in combination with anti–PD-1 therapy is well tolerated and shows promise for the treatment of both renal cell carcinoma and non–small cell lung cancer, according to findings from a phase 1 study.

The IL-10 product, AM0010 (pegilodecakin), was shown to be well tolerated as monotherapy, and was evaluated in combination with anti–PD-1 therapy in the two expansion cohorts included in the current analysis, Martin Oft, MD, said at the annual meeting of the Society for Immunotherapy of Cancer.

Of 34 evaluable renal cell carcinoma (RCC) patients included in one expansion cohort, 15 (44%) had an objective response at a median follow-up of 27 months, and two of those had a complete response (CR), Dr. Oft of ARMO BioSciences, Redwood City, Calif. reported.

In contrast, only 4 of 16 evaluable patients who received AM0010 monotherapy (25%) had an objective response, he said.

In eight patients who received AM0010 + pembrolizumab (Keytruda), the objective response rate was 50%, and both patients who had a complete response were in that group. The median progression-free survival (PFS) was 16.7 months. In 26 who received AM0010 + nivolumab (Opdivo), 11 had an objective response, but neither the complete response nor PFS rates had been reached in patients in that group, he noted.

The responses were durable.

“In fact, we had one patient who stopped treatment after a year in [complete remission] and is now 1 year in total remission without any further treatment,” he said.

Patients with non–small cell lung cancer (NSCLC) also experienced some benefit from the combination therapy. Objective responses were observed in 11 of 27 evaluable NSCLC patients (41%) who were treated with AM0010 and an anti–PD-1(9 of 22 [41%] who received AM0010 and nivolumab, and 2 of 5 [40%] who received AM0010 and pembrolizumab).

Progression-free survival was not reached in this cohort.

An analysis by PD-L1 status showed that 33% of NSCLC patients with PD-L1 levels less than 1% achieved a response, 67% of those with PD-L1 levels of 1%-49% achieved a response, and 80% of those with PD-L1 levels of 50% or greater achieved a response, he said, adding that the responses were very durable in all three groups.

Of note, NSCLC patients with liver metastasis have been shown in prior trials to have a lower overall response rate to immune checkpoint inhibition, but in this trial, 7 of 9 patients with NSCLC metastasis to the liver had a partial response (PR), Dr. Oft said.

The RCC and NSCLC patients had a median of 1 and 2 prior therapies, respectively.

AM0010 was given subcutaneously at a dose of 10 or 20 mcg/kg daily, pembrolizumab was given intravenously at 2mg/kg every 3 weeks, and nivolumab was given intravenously at a dose of 3 mg/kg every 2 weeks.

Treatment-related adverse events included anemia, thrombocytopenia, and fatigue, and all were reversible and transient, Dr. Oft said, noting that grade 3 or 4 adverse events were mostly absent in patients receiving the lower dose; thus the recommended phase 2 dose is 10 mcg/kg.

“It’s important to note that three of those six patients [receiving the lower dose] in fact had a PR or CR so this lower dose did not come at the expense of efficacy,” he added.

The mechanistic rationale for combining AM0010 and anti-PD1 for the treatment of cancer patients lies in the fact that IL‐10 has anti‐inflammatory functions and stimulates the cytotoxicity and proliferation of antigen-activated CD8+ T cells. T cell receptor–mediated activation of CD8+ T cells elevates IL‐10 receptors and PD‐1, Dr. Oft explained.

The robust efficacy data and the observed CD8+ T cell activation seen in these expansion cohorts is promising and encourages the continued study of AM0010 in combination with PD-1 inhibition, he concluded, noting that larger studies are planned for the coming year.

Dr. Oft is a founder and employee of ARMO BioSciences, which sponsored this study.

SOURCE: Naing A et al. SITC Abstract 012.

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