Despite chemotherapy and immunotherapy, the average survival of patients with advanced small-cell lung cancer is just 12 months. The SAKK 15/19 trial will examine whether radiotherapy and the administration of durvalumab could slow down the progression of the disease.
The standard treatment for patients with small-cell lung cancer at an advanced stage is 4-6 cycles of platinum-based chemotherapy plus etoposide, with or without atezolizumab. Unfortunately patients often quickly develop resistance to the treatment, which has a negative effect on its success.
Radiotherapy and maintenance therapy with durvalumab to activate the immune system
The risk of the small-cell lung cancer progressing can be reduced with additional radiotherapy. The SAKK 15/19 trial will investigate whether the combination of the anti-PD-L1 antibody durvalumab and radiotherapy in patients with advanced small-cell lung cancer can result in stronger activation of the immune system, with an improved antitumor immune response. The trial therapy (radiotherapy + durvalumab) will take place after chemo-immunotherapy with carboplatin, etoposide and durvalumab.
Which patients can take part?
The trial is open to patients who have advanced small-cell lung cancer in which there are metastases (stage IV) or where the tumor volume in the lung is so large that curative radiotherapy is not possible as a first treatment (stage III-IV).