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Pembrolizumab in Combination With Cisplatin and Intensity Modulated Radiotherapy (IMRT) in Head and Neck Cancer

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ClinicalTrials.gov Identifier: NCT02777385
Recruitment Status : Recruiting
First Posted : May 19, 2016
Last Update Posted : April 6, 2021
Sponsor:
Collaborator:
Merck Sharp & Dohme Corp.
Information provided by (Responsible Party):
David A. Clump, MD, PhD, University of Pittsburgh

Brief Summary:

The study regimen consists of cisplatin and radiation for all patients, the standard treatment for head and neck cancer. All patients will also receive pembrolizumab (the study drug), and will be randomized to two treatment schedules: either pembrolizumab with cisplatin-radiation, or pembrolizumab after completing cisplatin-radiation.

The goal of this research study is to learn which therapy order (adding pembrolizumab during vs. after cisplatin and radiation) may be more effective in treating head and neck cancer, as well as learn the side effects of these combinations.Pembrolizumab is an immune therapy, a drug that stimulates the immune system to fight cancer, and is FDA approved in lung cancer and melanoma. It is not currently FDA approved for head and neck cancer.


Condition or disease Intervention/treatment Phase
Head and Neck Squamous Cell Carcinoma Drug: Pembrolizumab Drug: Cisplatin Radiation: IMRT Phase 2

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Study Type : Interventional  (Clinical Trial)
Estimated Enrollment : 90 participants
Allocation: Randomized
Intervention Model: Parallel Assignment
Masking: None (Open Label)
Primary Purpose: Treatment
Official Title: Randomized, Phase II Study Evaluating Concurrent or Sequential Fixed-Dose Pembrolizumab in Combination With Cisplatin and Intensity Modulated Radiotherapy in Intermediate or High Risk, Previously Untreated, Locally Advanced Head and Neck Cancer
Study Start Date : June 2016
Estimated Primary Completion Date : June 2022
Estimated Study Completion Date : June 2023

Resource links provided by the National Library of Medicine


Arm Intervention/treatment
Experimental: Arm 1
Cisplatin, Radiation, and Pembrolizumab started 3 weeks after completion of cisplating and radiation.
Drug: Pembrolizumab
In both arms, the dose of pembrolizumab will be 200 mg (fixed dose) intravenous (IV) every 3 weeks for a total of 8 doses. In Arm 1, pembrolizumab will begin in week 10 of treatment, after cisplatin-IMRT is complete. In Arm 2, pembrolizumab will begin the week before cisplatin-IMRT.
Other Name: Keytruda

Drug: Cisplatin
Patients will receive cisplatin once weekly as an IV infusion over 60 minutes, for a total of 7 doses, at the same time as radiation.
Other Name: Platinol

Radiation: IMRT
IMRT will be delivered in 35 fractions (treatments) over 7 weeks (five treatments per non-holiday week) in one plan.

Experimental: Arm 2
Cisplatin and Radiation and Pembrolizumab given 1 week prior to the start of cisp/radiation and given every 3 weeks
Drug: Pembrolizumab
In both arms, the dose of pembrolizumab will be 200 mg (fixed dose) intravenous (IV) every 3 weeks for a total of 8 doses. In Arm 1, pembrolizumab will begin in week 10 of treatment, after cisplatin-IMRT is complete. In Arm 2, pembrolizumab will begin the week before cisplatin-IMRT.
Other Name: Keytruda

Drug: Cisplatin
Patients will receive cisplatin once weekly as an IV infusion over 60 minutes, for a total of 7 doses, at the same time as radiation.
Other Name: Platinol

Radiation: IMRT
IMRT will be delivered in 35 fractions (treatments) over 7 weeks (five treatments per non-holiday week) in one plan.




Primary Outcome Measures :
  1. 1-year progression-free survival [ Time Frame: 1 year ]
    Percentage of participants without disease progression at 1 year after start of treatment: Complete Response (CR) + Partial Response (PR)/total number of patients assessed. Per RECIST v1.1, CR: Disappearance of all target lesions. Any pathological lymph nodes (whether target or non-target) must have reduction in short axis to <10 mm. PR: At least a 30% decrease in the sum of diameters of target lesions, taking as reference the baseline sum diameters. PD: At least a 20% increase in the sum of diameters of target lesions, taking as reference the smallest sum on study (this includes the baseline sum if that is the smallest on study).

  2. 1-year failure rate [ Time Frame: 1 year ]
    1-year failure rate as measured by number of patients who progress within 1 year following treatment completion

  3. Acute Toxicity Rate [ Time Frame: Up to 6 months ]
    The number of patients who experience unacceptable toxicity during protocol treatment as measured by the NCI CTCAE version 4.0


Secondary Outcome Measures :
  1. Overall Survival (OS) [ Time Frame: Up to 5 years ]
    The length of time from start of study treatment that patients are still alive.

  2. Progression-free Survival (PFS) [ Time Frame: Up to 5 years ]
    Median number of months that treated participants experience Complete Response (CR) + Partial Response (PR). Per RECIST v1.1, CR: Disappearance of all target lesions. Any pathological lymph nodes (whether target or non-target) must have reduction in short axis to <10 mm. PR: At least a 30% decrease in the sum of diameters of target lesions, taking as reference the baseline sum diameters. PD: At least a 20% increase in the sum of diameters of target lesions, taking as reference the smallest sum on study (this includes the baseline sum if that is the smallest on study).



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Ages Eligible for Study:   18 Years and older   (Adult, Older Adult)
Sexes Eligible for Study:   All
Accepts Healthy Volunteers:   No
Criteria

Inclusion Criteria:

  • Written informed consent
  • If a woman of childbearing potential, documentation of negative pregnancy
  • Histologically-confirmed head and neck squamous cell carcinoma with no evidence of distant metastasis. The primary site may be the oral cavity, oropharynx, larynx, or hypopharynx. Patients with squamous cell carcinoma of unknown primary, metastatic to cervical lymph nodes, are permitted to enroll.
  • High risk or intermediate risk disease, defined below. Staging evaluation should be determined by imaging studies and complete head and neck exam in accordance with the American Joint committee on Cancer Staging Manual, 7th edition.

    o High risk patient must meet one of the following criteria:

  • Surgically unresectable oral cavity. Patients who are technically resectable but refuse surgery due to morbidity (eg. total glossectomy) are also eligible. Medically inoperable patients are not eligible.
  • Larynx: T4 any N; T2-3 and ≥ N2a
  • Hypopharynx: T1-2N1-3 or T3-4N0-3
  • Oropharynx: p16(-) AND T3-4 or ≥ N2a
  • Unknown primary: p16(-) AND ≥ N2a

    o Intermediate risk patients must meet one of the following criteria:

  • Oropharynx: p16(+) AND one of the following
  • T3 or ≥ N2a AND ≥ 10 pack-years tobacco exposure (see Tobacco Assessment Form, Appendix A)
  • T4 or N3 disease irrespective of tobacco exposure
  • Unknown primary: p16(+) AND one of the following
  • ≥ N2a AND ≥ 10 pack-years tobacco exposure
  • N3 disease irrespective of tobacco exposure
  • Patients must be untreated with curative-intent surgery for current diagnosis of Stage III, IVa, or IVb disease. Diagnostic biopsy of primary tumor and/or nodal sites is permitted.

    • Diagnostic simple tonsillectomy is permitted, provided patient has RECIST-measurable nodal disease.
    • Patients with a second HNSCC primary tumor are eligible for this study, provided more than 2 years have elapsed since the first diagnosis of HNSCC, the original tumor was managed with surgery only (no adjuvant chemotherapy or radiotherapy), and has not recurred.
  • Patients with simultaneous primaries or bilateral tumors are excluded, with the exception of patients with bilateral tonsil cancers or patients with T1-2, N0, M0 differentiated thyroid carcinoma (resected or management deferred), who are eligible.
  • No prior systemic (chemotherapy or biologic/molecular targeted therapy) or radiation treatment for head and neck cancer.

    • Patients may have received chemotherapy or radiation for a previous, curatively treated non-HNSCC malignancy, provided at least 2 years have elapsed.
    • Patients must be untreated with radiation above the clavicles.
  • Eastern Cooperative Oncology Group (ECOG) Performance Status 0-1
  • Age ≥ 18
  • Patients must have measurable disease according to RECIST 1.1
  • Patients must demonstrate adequate organ function as defined.
  • Sexually active patients must agree to use adequate contraceptive measures, while on study and for 30 days after the last dose of study drug.

Exclusion Criteria:

  • Nasopharyngeal primary site
  • Current participation in or previous participation in a study of an investigational agent or using an investigational device within 4 weeks of the first dose of study treatment.
  • History of severe allergic or anaphylactic reactions or hypersensitivity to recombinant proteins or excipients in the investigational agent.
  • Distant metastatic disease including CNS or leptomeningeal metastases is not allowed.
  • History of immunodeficiency or is receiving systemic steroid therapy or any other form of immunosuppressive therapy within 7 days prior to the first dose of trial treatment.
  • Received prior monoclonal antibody within 4 weeks prior to study Day 1 or who has not recovered (i.e. ≤ Grade 1 or at baseline) from adverse events due to agents administered more than 4 weeks earlier.
  • History of second malignancy within 2 years prior to Study Day 1 (except for excised and cured non-melanoma skin cancer, carcinoma in situ of breast or cervix, superficial bladder cancer, or T1a or T1b prostate cancer comprising < 5% of resected tissue with normal prostate specific antigen (PSA) since resection).
  • Active autoimmune disease requiring systemic treatment within the past 3 months or a documented history of clinically severe autoimmune disease, or a syndrome that requires systemic steroids or immunosuppressive agents.
  • Known history of Human Immunodeficiency Virus (HIV) (HIV 1/2 antibodies).
  • Known active Hepatitis B (e.g., HBsAg reactive) or Hepatitis C (e.g., HCV RNA [qualitative] is detected).
  • Received a live vaccine within 30 days prior to the first dose of trial treatment.
  • Received prior therapy with an anti-PD-1, anti-PD-L1, anti-PD-L2, anti-CD137, or anti-Cytotoxic T-lymphocyte-associated antigen-4 (CTLA-4) antibody (including ipilimumab or any other antibody or drug specifically targeting T-cell co-stimulation or checkpoint pathways).
  • Significant pulmonary disease, including pulmonary hypertension, interstitial lung disease, or active, non-infectious pneumonitis.
  • History or current evidence of any other medical or psychiatric condition, therapy, or laboratory abnormality that might confound the results of the trial, interfere with the subject's participation for the full duration of the trial, or is not in the best interest of the subject to participate, in the opinion of the treating investigator.
  • Peripheral neuropathy ≥ Grade 2
  • Significant cardiovascular disease, including:

    • Cardiac failure New York Heart Association (NYHA) class III or IV.
    • Myocardial infarction, severe or unstable angina within 6 months prior to Study Day 1.
    • History of serious arrhythmia (i.e., ventricular tachycardia, or ventricular fibrillation).
    • Ventricular cardiac arrhythmias requiring anti-arrhythmic medications.
    • Known left ventricular ejection fraction (LVEF) ≤ 50%.
  • Significant thrombotic or embolic events within 3 months prior to Study Day 1.
  • Major surgery within 6 weeks prior to Study Day 1 (subjects must have completely recovered from any previous surgery prior to Study Day 1). Biopsy, diagnostic tonsillectomy, airway tumor debulking or excisional lymph node biopsy do not constitute major surgery.
  • Active infection requiring antibiotics or antifungals within 7 days prior to first dose of study drug.
  • Significant electrolyte imbalance prior to enrollment (note that patients may be supplemented to achieve acceptable electrolyte values):

    • Hypomagnesemia <1.2 mg/dL or 0.5 mmol/L.
    • Hypokalemia < 3.0 mmol/L.
  • Women must not be pregnant or breastfeeding.

Information from the National Library of Medicine

To learn more about this study, you or your doctor may contact the study research staff using the contact information provided by the sponsor.

Please refer to this study by its ClinicalTrials.gov identifier (NCT number): NCT02777385


Contacts
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Contact: Samantha Demko, RN, BSN 412-647-9015 albesl@upmc.edu
Contact: Karen Holeva, BS (412) 623-1275 holevakd@upmc.edu

Locations
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United States, Pennsylvania
UPMC Hillman Cancer Center Recruiting
Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, United States, 15232
Contact: Samantha Demko, RN, BSN    412-647-9015    albesl@upmc.edu   
Contact: Karen Holeva, BS    (412) 623-1275    holevakd@upmc.edu   
Principal Investigator: David Clump, MD         
Sponsors and Collaborators
David A. Clump, MD, PhD
Merck Sharp & Dohme Corp.
Investigators
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Principal Investigator: David Clump, MD UPMC Hillman Cancer Center
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Responsible Party: David A. Clump, MD, PhD, Assistant Professor of Medicine, University of Pittsburgh
ClinicalTrials.gov Identifier: NCT02777385    
Other Study ID Numbers: 15-132
First Posted: May 19, 2016    Key Record Dates
Last Update Posted: April 6, 2021
Last Verified: April 2021
Individual Participant Data (IPD) Sharing Statement:
Plan to Share IPD: No

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Studies a U.S. FDA-regulated Drug Product: Yes
Studies a U.S. FDA-regulated Device Product: No
Product Manufactured in and Exported from the U.S.: No
Keywords provided by David A. Clump, MD, PhD, University of Pittsburgh:
Head and Neck
Locally Advanced
Squamous Cell Carcinoma
SCCHN
Untreated
High Risk
Intermediate Risk
Radiation Therapy
Cisplatin
Additional relevant MeSH terms:
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Carcinoma, Squamous Cell
Head and Neck Neoplasms
Squamous Cell Carcinoma of Head and Neck
Carcinoma
Neoplasms, Glandular and Epithelial
Neoplasms by Histologic Type
Neoplasms
Neoplasms, Squamous Cell
Neoplasms by Site
Pembrolizumab
Antineoplastic Agents
Antineoplastic Agents, Immunological