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Year : 2020  |  Volume : 5  |  Issue : 2  |  Page : 29-33

The anti-programmed cell death 1 antibody immunotherapy: A paradigm shift in the treatment of nonsmall-cell lung cancer

Department of Medicine, School of Medicine, Medical Sciences and Nutrition, University of Aberdeen, Aberdeen, UK

Correspondence Address:
Dr. Victor Chiagoziem Ezenwajiaku
School of Medicine, Medical Sciences and Nutrition, University of Aberdeen, Aberdeen, AB25 2ZD
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/njct.njct_9_21

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With an increasing annual incidence, lung cancer remains the second most common cancer after breast cancer and the most common cause of cancer death worldwide. The distinctive features of its histological subtypes and the multifactorial etiologies ranging from tobacco smoking to genetic predisposition contribute to the associated poor clinical outcomes. Nonsmall-cell lung cancer (NSCLC) which constitutes most of the cases is a molecularly heterogeneous disease associated with poorer prognosis and risk of recurrence. However, this tumoral heterogeneity, which is disadvantageous to traditional chemotherapy, has been shown to be advantageous to immunotherapy in this review. Hence, the application of immune checkpoint inhibitors (ICIs) such as antiprogrammed cell death-1 antibodies has brought a change in thinking in the management of NSCLC, with future combination therapies looking promising in reducing the lung cancer burden. This review focuses on lung cancer background and treatment setbacks, exploring ICIs and antiprogrammed cell death-1 antibody mechanisms, the clinical trials leading to Food and Drug Administration approvals and future advancements.

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