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Dr. McDermott on VEGF Plus PD-1 in Renal Cell Carcinoma

David F. McDermott, MD, Director of Biologic Therapy and Cutaneous Oncology Programs, Hematology and Oncology at the Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center, discusses the combination of VEGF plus PD-1 in renal cell carcinoma (RCC).

David F. McDermott, MD, Director of Biologic Therapy and Cutaneous Oncology Programs, Hematology and Oncology at the Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center, discusses the combination of VEGF plus PD-1 in renal cell carcinoma (RCC).

Recently, PD-1 blockade with nivolumab (Opdivo) was approved by the FDA for patients who failed prior VEGF therapy. The treatment only works well in a subset of patients, with benefits wearing off over time.

McDermott is interested in building on the benefits from this by combining either antibodies that target VEGF or oral tyrosine kinase inhibitors to prolong symptom management in patients.

Establishing predictive biomarkers is a challenge, says McDermott, but it must be studied further. With these biomarkers, it will be easier for physicians to determine which combination would be best for their patients. Blood-based markers are also being looked into.