Study: COVID-19 Vaccine Does Not Raise Immune Toxicity Risk for Those Treated With ICI

Article

Findings are encouraging for individuals with cancer who are receiving immune checkpoint inhibition treatment and want to get a third vaccine dose, investigators said.

There is no increased risk of immune toxicity among individuals treated with immune checkpoint inhibition (ICI) who received a COVID-19 vaccine, including those who just started therapy, according to the results of a study published in the Journal of the National Comprehensive Cancer Network.

The findings are encouraging for individuals with cancer who are receiving ICI treatment and want to get a third dose of a COVID-19 vaccine, investigators said.

Investigators from the Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center used electronic pharmacy records to identify individuals who were vaccinated with a first dose between January 16, 2021, and March 27, 2021. The individuals who were included also received FDA-approved ipilimumab, nivolumab, or pembrolizumab within 90 days before or after their first vaccinations.

Investigators recorded age at vaccination, any-grade new-onset immune-related adverse events (AEs) after the first vaccine, dates and type of ICI administration, data on vaccine manufacturer, , death during the follow-up period, sex, and tumor type, and.

A total of 408 individuals were included in the study. Approximately 30% were treated for thoracic cancer, 21% for genitourinary cancer, 12% for upper gastrointestinal (GI) cancer, 12% for melanoma, 10% for gynecologic cancer, 5% for head and neck cancer, 3% for lower gastrointestinal cancer, 5% for sarcoma, 1% for breast cancer, 1% for glioblastoma, and 1% for lymphoma.

Additionally, approximately 65% were on pembrolizumab, 24% on nivolumab, 10% on a combination of ipilimumab and nivolumab, 0.7% were on ipilimumab, and 0.3% on all 3 agents. Ninety-five percent of individuals had received the Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine.

Investigators reported that 7% of individuals experienced a new immune-related AE during the follow-up period. Among those who had a history of immune-related AEs before vaccination, just 6% experienced an immune-related AE postvaccination.

All 4 of the individuals who experienced a grade-3 immune-related AR had GI events, with 3 treated with combination ipilimumab and nivolumab and 1 treated with pembrolizumab.

No one experienced a flare of a prior immune-related AE after vaccination, and there were no significant differences in baseline characteristics or treatment between both groups, with the exception of individuals who began a new immunotherapy agent during the follow-up period.

None of the 28 individuals who received the first dose and ICI therapy on the same day developed an immune-related AE during the follow-up period.

Among those who began new immunotherapy courses after vaccination, 17% developed an immune-related AE. The median follow-up after initiation of a new immunotherapy was 78.5 days.

A limitation of the study was the absence of a temporally aligned comparison group of individuals who did not receive a COVID-19 vaccine but were receiving ICI therapy, according to investigators.

Additionally, the sample size of the study was not large enough to determine the risk of rare postvaccination events, including Guillain-Barré syndrome, investigators said.

Reference

Widman AJ, Cohen B, Park V, McClure T, Wolchok J, Kamboj M. Immune-related adverse events among COVID-19–vaccinated patients with cancer receiving immune checkpoint blockade. J Natl Compr Canc Netw. 2022;20(10):1134-1138. doi:10.6004/jnccn.2022.7048

Related Videos
Female Pharmacist Holding Tablet PC - Image credit: Tyler Olson | stock.adobe.com
African American male pharmacist using digital tablet during inventory in pharmacy - Image credit: sofiko14 | stock.adobe.com
palliative and hospice care/ Image Credits: © David Pereiras - stock.adobe.com
Young woman using smart phone,Social media concept. - Image credit: Urupong | stock.adobe.com
cancer pain management | Image Credits: © Burlingham - stock.adobe.com
multiple myeloma clinical trial daratumumab/ Image Credits: © Dragana Gordic - stock.adobe.com
multiple myeloma clinical trial/Image Credits: © Studio Romantic - stock.adobe.com
3d rendered illustration of lung cancer 3D illustration - Image credit:  appledesign | stock.adobe.com
selling mental health medication to man at pharmacy | Image Credit: Syda Productions - stock.adobe.com
© 2024 MJH Life Sciences

All rights reserved.