The aim of this study is to determine whether combined immunotherapy with nivolumab and ipilimumab in patients with advanced kidney cancer that cannot be treated surgically or has formed secondary tumors is effective, and whether it can stop the cancer from growing or cause it to recede. We also want to investigate the factors that determine whether or not a patient responds to the treatment. Consequently, we will be taking blood and tissue samples in addition to administering the treatment. These samples are important in finding out why the medication works.
Both nivolumab and ipilimumab have already been authorized for the treatment of kidney cancer. They can activate the immune system and in this way help to fight the cancer. Yet these treatments only work in a small number of patients. There is initial evidence that a combination of nivolumab and ipilimumab could have a better effect in more patients. We aim to investigate this in more detail in this study. In the SAKK 07/17 trial, all patients will be administered the same drugs. Accordingly, all participants may possibly benefit from an improved treatment. The therapy will last up to 2 years, depending on the observed effects.