Lung cancer is a very challenging condition to manage, especially when discovered late. The incredibly high incidence of lung cancer – mostly caused by smoking tobacco products – made it the second most common cancer in the world.
Today, scientists are shifting focus to synergetic combination therapies to effectively manage different types of lung cancer.
In this article, we will review the clinical evidence to understand how Tiragolumab and Atezolizumab help with non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC). But first, let us quickly define both drugs.
What is Tiragolumab?
Tiragolumab is a monoclonal antibody that binds with T cell immunoreceptor with Ig and ITIM domains (TIGIT), which is a member of the Ig superfamily and an inhibitor of immune responses. TIGIT is also involved in tumor cell immune evasion, allowing cancer cells to grow and proliferate.
Tiragolumab produces a more amplified immune response by blocking the interaction of TIGIT with a protein known as poliovirus receptor, or PVR (i.e., CD155). This reaction can suppress the body’s immune responses.
What is Atezolizumab?
Atezolizumab is also a monoclonal antibody sold under the brand name Tecentriq. Researchers used this medication to treat the following cancers:
- Small cell lung cancer
- Non-small cell lung cancer
- Hepatocellular carcinoma
- Urothelial carcinoma
- Trible-negative breast cancer
Atezolizumab works by binding to programmed cell death-ligand 1 (PD-L1), which is a protein that aids in cancer proliferation.
When used as monotherapy, atezolizumab may cause the following side effects:
- Nausea and vomiting
- Anorexia (i.e., reduced appetite)
- Fever with a rash
- Back pain
- Myalgia (i.e., muscle pain)
- Urinary tract infections
However, the relatively low incidence of these side effects and the risk/benefit analysis makes the use of this drug worth it in some cases.
What does the new study reveal about the Tiragolumab and Atezolizumab combination?
A few days ago, Roche revealed that the use of tiragolumab and atezolizumab in treating NSCLC can significantly improve survival in patients. The results were contrasted with using atezolizumab alone, and they are most impactful for patients with PD-L1-positive metastatic NSCLC.
These findings were part of phase II clinical trial called CITYSCAPE (NCT03563716).
The trial enrolled 135 patients. One group received a fixed dose of atezolizumab (1,200 mg) administered once every 3 weeks – intravenous infusion. This group also received placebo at the same time.
The other group received 600 mg of atezolizumab and Tiragolumab each following the same timeline and administration protocols.
The 2.5-year follow-up showed that the overall survival (OS) of patients who received both medications was 23.2 months. On the other hand, the group who received monotherapy with a placebo had an OS of 14.5 months.
The findings revealed in this clinical trial make us look forward to seeing what phase III clinical trial will unveil. This could prove significant for patients with metastatic non-small cell lung cancer.
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