About 44% of cancer patients are candidates for the treatment of checkpoint inhibitors approved by FDA, but only 13% may respond to therapy.
"We were a little disappointed with this percentage, and we believe that he is at odds with the hype and huge hype caused by these drugs, - said Dr. Vinay Prasad at the Oregon Health and Science University -. These drugs help many patients, but not the majority. Most patients will not benefit from the treatment, even if the medication will be free. "
"I hope that someday we will be able to speak honestly about the anti-cancer drugs to patients are not being deceived or misleading rhetoric" - he added.
To calculate the percentage of patients who could potentially become candidates, and those who can benefit from checkpoints inhibitors approved from 2011 to 2018, Dr. Prasad and Dr. Alison Haslam analyzed death rates from cancer of the American Cancer Society in lieu of performance the annual incidence of running or metastatic cancer.
Researchers have also examined the response rate (complete and partial) of patients in accordance with FDA labeling and published reports assessing the overall response rates in the various test circuits.
Six checkpoints inhibitors have been approved for 14 indications for March 25, 2011 - August 17, 2018. The estimated percentage of candidates for treatment with these drugs has increased from 1.54% in 2011 to 43.63% in 2018. In contrast, the percentage of patients with cancer, which is estimated to have responded to therapy inhibitors, was 0.14% in 2011, when ipilimumab was approved for the treatment of unresectable or metastatic melanoma. By 2015, this percentage increased to 5.86%, and by 2018 - up to 12.46%.
Study co-author Dr. Daniel catenaccio, he said: "This study quantitatively reflects a disturbing trend - despite the expansion of the number of patients eligible for costly and potentially toxic inhibitors of immune reference points, the ratio of patients benefiting from treatment decreases."
With a better selection of patients and earlier diagnosis of diseases, without a doubt, the number of people eligible for treatment inhibitors and benefits of therapy change. According to scientists, patients should be encouraged to participate in clinical trials, to get answers to important questions - for example, who should be treated with inhibitors of control points separately, in combination with other drugs or not receive at all.