Three Keytruda Combinations Show Signs of Efficacy in Metastatic CRPC

Three Keytruda Combinations Show Signs of Efficacy in Metastatic CRPC
Combining the immune checkpoint inhibitor Keytruda (pembrolizumab) with either a PARP inhibitor, chemotherapy, or hormone therapy led to promising signs of activity in metastatic castration-resistant prostate cancer (mCRPC) patients in a Phase 1b/2 trial, Merck — Keytruda's developer — announced. The findings were presented at the 2019 Genitourinary Cancers Symposium (ASCO GU), Feb. 14-16 in San Francisco, California. Keytruda, by Merck (MSD outside the U.S. and Canada), binds to the PD-1 receptor on immune cells and prevents the binding of the PD-L1 ligand produced by cancer cells. Cancer cells use this mechanism to evade immune surveillance, and thus, Keytruda is meant to restore a functional immune system that effectively fights cancer. The KEYNOTE-365 Phase 1b/2 trial (NCT02861573) — still looking for participants — was designed to test multiple Keytruda combinations for the treatment of men with metastatic castration-resistant prostate cancer. The trial has four arms, or cohorts, receiving Keytruda in combination with another therapy: Cohort A: The PARP inhibitor Lynparza (olaparib); Cohort B: The chemotherapy docetaxel and prednisone; Cohort C: The hormone therap
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