Subgroup analysis of the AFTER I-O study: a retrospective study on the efficacy and safety of subsequent molecular targeted therapy after immune-oncology therapy in Japanese patients with metastatic renal cell carcinoma

Jpn J Clin Oncol. 2021 Nov 1;51(11):1656-1664. doi: 10.1093/jjco/hyab114.


Background: We performed subgroup analyses of the AFTER I-O study to clarify the association of time-to-treatment failure (TTF) and discontinuation reason of prior immune-oncology (I-O) therapy, and molecular targeted therapy (TT) regimen with the outcomes of TT after I-O.

Methods: The data of Japanese metastatic renal cell carcinoma patients treated with TT after nivolumab (NIVO) (CheckMate 025) or NIVO + ipilimumab (IPI) (CheckMate 214) were retrospectively analyzed. The objective response rates (ORRs), progression-free survival (PFS) and overall survival (OS) of TT after I-O were analyzed by subgroups: TTF (<6 or ≥6 months) and discontinuation reason of prior I-O (progression or adverse events), and TT regimen (sunitinib or axitinib). We also analyzed PFS2 of prior I-O and OS from first-line therapy.

Results: The ORR and median PFS of TT after NIVO and NIVO+IPI among the subgroups was 17-36% and 20-44%, and 7.1-11.6 months and 16.3-not reached (NR), respectively. The median OS of TT after NIVO was longer in patients with longer TTF of NIVO and treated with axitinib. Conversely, median OS of TT after NIVO+IPI was similar among subgroups. The median PFS2 of NIVO and NIVO+IPI was 36.7 and 32.0 months, respectively. The median OS from first-line therapy was 70.5 months for patients treated with NIVO and NR with NIVO+IPI. The safety profile of each TT after each I-O was similar to previous reports.

Conclusions: The efficacy of TT after NIVO or NIVO+IPI was favorable regardless of the TTF and discontinuation reason of prior I-O, and TT regimen.

Keywords: ipilimumab; molecular targeted therapy; nivolumab; renal cell carcinoma.

MeSH terms

  • Antineoplastic Combined Chemotherapy Protocols
  • Carcinoma, Renal Cell* / drug therapy
  • Humans
  • Ipilimumab / therapeutic use
  • Japan
  • Kidney Neoplasms* / drug therapy
  • Molecular Targeted Therapy
  • Retrospective Studies


  • Ipilimumab