Understanding the unique aspects of immunotherapy for lung cancer

At the German Cancer Congress 2016, held in Berlin, Germany, from 24 to 27 February 2016, Martin Reck, MD, PhD, from the LungenClinic Grosshansdorf, Grosshansdorf, Germany, discusses the efficacy and safety of immunotherapy for patients with non-small cell lung cancer. Promising agents include the anti-PD1 antibodies, nivolumab and pembrolizumab; the anti-PD-L1 antibodies, atezolizumab, durvalumab and avelumab; and anti-CTLA-4 antibodies, ipilimumab and tremelimumab. Challenges exist with determining how these immunotherapy approaches can be integrated in clinical practice, in order to, for example, exploit their favourable toxicity profile while avoiding immune-related adverse events.