Blockade of EGFR improves responsiveness to PD-1 blockade in EGFR-mutated non–small cell lung cancer

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Science Immunology  31 Jan 2020:
Vol. 5, Issue 43, eaav3937
DOI: 10.1126/sciimmunol.aav3937

Giving anti–PD-1 a boost

Anti–PD-1 therapy is ineffective in the context of EGFR-mutated lung adenocarcinomas (LUADs). Here, Sugiyama et al. find that these tumors have an immunosuppressive tumor microenvironment characterized by increased infiltration of regulatory T cells. Using a mouse model, they demonstrate that a clinically available EGFR inhibitor, erlotinib, can be used to improve responsiveness to anti–PD-1 therapy in EGFR-mutated LUADs. Because both anti–PD-1 antibodies and erlotinib are already being used in the clinic, this preclinical proof-of-concept study should serve as a basis for clinical studies to examine whether erlotinib enhances responsiveness of EGFR-mutated lung adenocarcinomas to PD-1–centric therapies.

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