BackgroundDiffuse intrinsic pontine glioma (DIPG) is a rare, aggressive brain tumor with no known cure. Reirradiation (reRT) at recurrence can prolong survival. The impact of irradiation may be heightened when combined with PD-1 inhibition. We describe our experience using reRT, with or without PD-1 inhibition, in a cohort of patients with recurrent DIPG.
MethodsWe performed a retrospective cohort analysis of children who received reRT with or without concomitant PD-1 inhibition for recurrent DIPG at a single institution between 2005 and 2016. We compared progression-free (PFS) and overall survival (OS) between those who received reRT alone or in combination with PD-1 inhibition. We then compared reRT to a cohort of patients who did not receive reRT.
ResultsThirty-one patients were included (8-reRT with nivolumab; 4-reRT alone; 19-no reRT). Patients who received reRT had prolonged OS compared to no reRT (22.9 months-reRT with nivolumab; 20.4 months-reRT alone; 8.3 months-no reRT; p < 0.0001). Patients who received reRT with nivolumab vs. reRT only had slightly prolonged OS from diagnosis and from reRT (22.9 vs. 20.4 months for time from diagnosis; 6.8 vs. 6.0 months for time from reRT). All patients receiving reRT with or without nivolumab tolerated the therapy without acute or late toxicity.
ConclusionsOur experience demonstrates the tolerability of reRT with concurrent PD-1 inhibition for recurrent DIPG and suggests that combination therapy may offer survival benefit. Future prospective studies are needed to confirm the benefits of this combination therapy.