Health Services Research & Development

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Bari S, Muzaffar J, Chan A, Jain SR, Haider AM, Adams Curry M, Hostler CJ. Outcomes of Programmed Cell Death Protein 1 (PD-1) and Programmed Death-Ligand 1(PD-L1) Inhibitor Therapy in HIV Patients with Advanced Cancer. Journal of oncology. 2019 Jan 1; 2019:2989048.
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Abstract: Due to HAART and consequent decline in mortality from infectious complications, HIV patients have an increasing burden of non-AIDS defining cancers. Data on their safety and efficacy is unknown as these patients were excluded from clinical trials due to concern of unforeseen side effects. . The main objective of our study was to evaluate the efficacy and safety profile of PD-1 and PD-L1 inhibitors in HIV patients being treated for advanced cancers and to assess the impact of these drugs on HIV status of the patients specifically CD4 count and HIV viral load. . This was a retrospective analysis of data of 17 patients HIV treated with one of the PD-1/PD-L1 inhibitors (Nivolumab, Pembrolizumab, Atezolizumab, Durvalumab, or Avelumab) for advanced cancer. . 10 out of 17 patients responded to therapy. 7 patients, all of whom had shown response to therapy, were alive and 4 were still on checkpoint inhibitor. 10 patients including all 7 nonresponders had died. Responders had minimum of 15 weeks of response while one had ongoing continued response at 34 weeks. Side effects were seen in 7 patients and only one patient needed cessation of therapy. CD4 counts were stable on treatment while HIV RNA remained undetectable. . PD-1 and PD-L1 inhibitors appear to have comparable efficacy and tolerable side effect profile and have no effect on HIV markers when used in HIV patients with advanced cancers.