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Expert Point of View: Tanguy Y. Seiwert, MD


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Tanguy Y. Seiwert, MD, moderator of the session on the phase II trial of neoadjuvant nivolumab with or without ipilimumab in patients with oral cavity cancer, underscored concerns about differences in outcome measures. Dr. Seiwert is Director of the Head and Neck Cancer Oncology Disease Group and Assistant Professor of Oncology at Johns Hopkins University, Baltimore.

“Chemotherapy will induce a much higher response rate than immunotherapy, and we do know that immunotherapy isn’t appropriately measured by response,” said Dr. Seiwert. “It’s more [appropriately measured] by survival, and you can’t really assess that in this study. Are there different outcome measures that might actually be more accurate to use early on as surrogate markers?”

Initial study author Jonathan Schoenfeld, MD, MPH, Senior Physician at Dana-Farber Cancer Institute and Brigham and Women’s Hospital and Associate Professor of Radiation Oncology at Harvard Medical School, agreed that these questions are important to ask in the future. “We tried to look at response in multiple different ways and are continuing to look at whether or not pathologic response, volumetric response, or something seen on the correlative studies is indicative of a durable antitumor immune response and long-term benefit,” he said. 

DISCLOSURE: Dr. Seiwert reported no conflicts of interest. Dr. Schoenfeld disclosed financial relationships with ACI Clinical, AstraZeneca, Bristol-Myers Squibb, Catenion, Debiopharm, Immunitas, LEK, Merck, Nanobiotix, Regeneron, and Tilos.

 


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