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Biomarker analysis from the KEYNOTE-199 trial of pembrolizumab in patients (pts) with docetaxel-refractory metastatic castration-resistant prostate cancer (mCRPC)

  • Emmanuel S. Antonarakis,
  • Jose Maria M. Piulats Rodriguez,
  • Marine Gross-Goupil,
  • Jeffrey C. Goh,
  • Ulka N. Vaishampayan,
  • Ronald De Wit,
  • Tuomo Alanko,
  • Satoshi Fukasawa,
  • Kenichi Tabata,
  • Susan Feyerabend,
  • Raanan Berger,
  • Haiyan Wu,
  • Jeri Kim,
  • Charles Schloss,
  • Ping Qiu,
  • Leah Suttner

In the phase II KEYNOTE-199 study (NCT02787005), pembrolizumab monotherapy demonstrated antitumor activity in pts with docetaxel-refractory mCRPC (n = 258). Here we evaluated the association between prespecified molecular biomarkers and clinical outcomes.

Cohorts 1 (C1) and 2 (C2) enrolled pts with RECIST-measurable PD-L1–positive (combined positive score [CPS] ≥1 using immunohistochemistry) and PD-L1–negative (CPS <1) disease, respectively. C3 enrolled pts with nonmeasurable, bone-predominant disease, irrespective of PD-L1 status. Biomarkers evaluated in this analysis were tumor mutational burden ([TMB; mutations/exome] n = 155), PD-L1 CPS (n = 255), tumor microenvironment–based 18-gene RNA expression profile ([GEP] n = 196), and microsatellite instability ([MSI] as determined by Promega PCR analysis; n = 147). Outcomes evaluated for C1 and C2 (n = 200) were ORR, disease control rate (DCR), and radiographic PFS (rPFS) per blinded, independent central review per PCWG-modified RECIST v1.1. Outcomes evaluated for C1-C3 (n = 258) were prostate-specific antigen (PSA) response, time to PSA progression, and OS. Significance of continuous biomarkers (CPS; TMB; GEP) was prespecified at 0.05 for one-sided P values from logistic (ORR; DCR; PSA response) and Cox proportional hazard regression (rPFS; OS; PSA progression) adjusted for Eastern Cooperative Oncology Group performance status. Binary biomarkers (MSI) were analyzed using Fisher’s exact test (ORR; DCR; PSA response). Clinical data cutoff date: Jun 24, 2019.

Median TMB was 53.0 (interquartile range [IQR], 40.5 to 78.0), median CPS was 1 (IQR, 0 to 5), and median GEP was –0.64 (IQR, –0.88 to –0.46); 6 pts (2.3%) had MSI-high tumors. In C1-C3, TMB was associated with PSA response (one-sided nominal P = 0.0016) and time to PSA progression (one-sided nominal P = 0.00092). In C1-C3, PD-L1 CPS was associated with PSA response (one-sided nominal P = 0.046) and time to PSA progression (one-sided nominal P = 0.021). In C1-C3, GEP was not significantly associated with response. In C1-C3, MSI was associated with PSA response (one-sided nominal P = 0.019).

In this biomarker analysis from KEYNOTE-199 C1-C3, TMB and PD-L1 CPS were associated with better PSA response; however, small pt numbers limit definitive conclusions on ORR, DCR, and OS. Further evaluation of molecular biomarkers in pts with mCRPC treated with pembrolizumab is warranted. Clinical trial information: NCT02787005.