Pembrolizumab Demonstrates Improvement in IIB, IIC Melanoma

Source: Dermatology Times, March 2022

Merck, a pharmaceutical company, announcedthe results of a phase 3 KEYNOTE-716 trial (NCT03553836) investigating pembrolizumab (Keytruda, Merck), a humanized monoclonal antibody that blocks the interaction between an anti-programmed death receptor (PD)-1 and its ligands, PD-L1 and PD-L2, thus activating T-lymphocytes, which may affect both tumor and healthy cells. KEYNOTE-716 is a randomized, 2-part, phase 3 trial evaluating the adjuvant treatment of patients with completely resected high-risk stage II melanoma.

The trial examined the treatment as adjuvant treatment for patients with resected stage IIB and IIC melanoma. It met its key secondary endpoint of distant metastasis-free survival (DMFS) at a pre-specified interim analysis, according to the press release. In the trial, pembrolizumab as an adjuvant treatment demonstrated a statistically significant improvement in the endpoint of DMFS compared to placebo andno new safety signals were observed. Currently, the analysis shows that treatment with pembrolizumab also continued to show an improvement in recurrence-free survival (RFS) compared to placebo. The full results from this analysis of KEYNOTE-716 will be presented at an upcoming medical meeting, according to the release.