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Phase II trial of cisplatin, gemcitabine and pembrolizumab for platinum-resistant ovarian cancer



To evaluate the combination of pembrolizumab, cisplatin and gemcitabine in recurrent platinum-resistant ovarian cancer.


Patients received six cycles of chemotherapy with gemcitabine and cisplatin on day 1 and day 8 of a 21-day treatment cycle. Pembrolizumab was administered on day 1 of cycles 3-6 and as maintenance monotherapy in cycles 7-34. Palliative radiation to a non-target symptomatic lesion was allowed. The primary objective was overall response rate by RECIST 1.1 criteria. Secondary objectives included safety, progression-free survival, time to progression, duration of response and overall survival.


An interim analysis for futility was performed at 18 evaluable patients. Overall response rate was 60%, duration of response was 4.9 months and time to progression was 5.2 months. Progression-free survival at 6 and 12 months was 43% and 5%. Median progression-free survival was 6.2 months and median overall survival was 11.3 months. In all patients, CA125 levels reflected response and progression. There were no pseudoprogression events. After receiving palliative radiation during pembrolizumab maintenance, a patient with recurrent ovarian clear cell carcinoma had an exceptional and durable response that is ongoing for greater than 2 years. After consultation with the sponsor, based on the modest duration of response observed at the interim analysis for futility, the decision was made to close the trial to further accrual.


The addition of pembrolizumab to cisplatin and gemcitabine did not appear to provide benefit beyond chemotherapy alone in patients with recurrent platinum-resistant ovarian cancer.

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