Administration of RP1 Through Intratumoral Injection Offers Unique Advantages in Melanoma Treatment

Source: Onc Live, April 2022

Oncolytic immunotherapy with talimogene laherparepvec (T-VEC; Imlygic) and vusolimogene oderparepvec (RP1) has the potential to provide unique clinical benefits in patients with melanoma through direct intratumoral administration, according to Nikhil Khushalani, MD.

Building on innovations in T-VEC therapy, RP1, in combination with immune checkpoint inhibitors (ICIs), has been shown to enhance cytotoxic death in tumor cells while sparing healthy tissue. Now, ongoing clinical trials such as the phase 2 IGNYTE (NCT03767348) and CERPASS (NCT04050436) trials are examining the efficacy of RP1 in combination with the ICIs nivolumab (Opdivo) and cemiplimab-rwlc (Libtayo), respectively.

“In the IGNYTE trial, [for patients with] cutaneous squamous cell carcinoma (CSCC), RP1 in combination with nivolumab provided response rates of over 60%,” Khushalani, vice chair of the Department of Cutaneous Oncology at Moffitt Cancer Center, said. “More impressively, at least at early reads, there were high percentages of complete response [CR] rates. Although we don’t know whether CR rates in CSCC necessarily translate into improved outcomes, like we’ve seen in melanoma, that may be the case, and hopefully time will tell us that.”