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BMJ Open


INTRODUCTION: The treatment standard for high-risk upper urinary tract urothelial carcinoma (UUTUC) is radical nephroureterectomy. However, some patients may be unfit or unwilling, and in such patients the available alternatives are suboptimal. Therapies targeting the programmed death (PD) pathway have shown promise in urothelial carcinom (UC). We designed the current study to determine the safety and efficacy of administering MK-3475 (a monoclonal antibody targeting interaction between PD-1 and its ligand) in combination with bacillus Calmette-Guerin (BCG) in high-risk non-muscle invasive UUTUC patients.

METHODS: This represents a single-centre phase-II efficacy study of MK-3475 therapy in combination with BCG for subjects, 18 years of age or older, with pathologically documented non-muscle invasive high-risk UUTUC unfit or unwilling to be treated with radical nephroureterectomy. Twenty subjects will be enrolled; patients will receive treatment with 200 mg of MK-3475 every 21 days, starting 2 weeks from the initial endoscopic resection and continuing for 6 weeks after the final dose of BCG. The primary objective is to determine the safety and efficacy of administering MK-3475 at a fixed dose of 200 mg every 3 weeks in conjunction with intrapelvic BCG. Secondary objectives include 19 week and the 3, 12 and 24-month post-treatment completion complete response and progression-free rate assessments.

ETHICS AND DISSEMINATION: The study has been approved by the Institutional Review Board of the Henry Ford Hospital. The results of this study will be published in a peer-reviewed journal and presented at a scientific conference.


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