Kidney Cancer Coverage from Every Angle

GU Cancers Symposium 2020: Novel Agent May Inhibit Oncogenic Driver in Kidney Cancer

By: Cordi Craig
Posted: Friday, March 6, 2020

Hypoxia-inducible factor (HIF)-2α promotes new blood vessel growth that fuels kidney tumors. According to a recent phase I/II study, MK-6482, a new first-in-class agent that targets HIF-2α, showed activity and tolerability among heavily pretreated patients with clear cell renal cell carcinoma. The early findings were presented at the 2020 Genitourinary (GU) Cancers Symposium in San Francisco (Abstract 611), and a phase III trial has been launched as a result.

“A new drug as a single agent showing an overall response rate of 24% across all risk categories—poor, intermediate, and good and in a heavily refractory population—is quite promising,” stated Toni K. Choueiri, MD, of the Dana-Farber Cancer Institute, Boston, in an institutional press release.

The dose-expansion cohort included 55 patients with advanced clear cell renal cell carcinoma who received at least one prior therapy and an average of three prior therapies. The patient pool included those with favorable-risk (9%), intermediate-risk (73%), and poor-risk (18%) disease.

The researchers reported an overall response rate of 24% and 13 confirmed partial responses. Of the patients with baseline and post-baseline assessments, more than half (67%) experienced tumor shrinkage. The median progression-free survival was 11.0 months, and the 12-month progression-free survival rate was 49%. The median progression-free survival was 16.5, 11.0, and 6.9 months for patients with favorable-, intermediate-, and poor-risk disease, respectively.

After a median follow-up of 13 months, the most frequently reported adverse events included anemia, fatigue, dyspnea, nausea, and cough. The researchers did not report any grade 4 or 5 treatment-related adverse events; the most common grade 3 adverse events included anemia and hypoxia.

Disclosure: For full disclosures of the study authors, visit

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