Programmed cell death 1 (PD-1)/PD-ligand 1(PD-L1) inhibitors-related pneumonitis in patients with advanced non-small cell lung cancer

Lung Cancer

Asia Pac J Clin Oncol. 2020 Aug 5. doi: 10.1111/ajco.13380. Online ahead of print.


Immune-related pneumonitis is an uncommon but potentially fatal immune-related adverse event in advanced non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC) patients during treatment with anti-programmed cell death 1 (PD-1) and programmed cell death-ligand 1 (PD-L1). Underlying emphysema, interstitial lung disease (ILD), and previous radiation therapy for lung cancer might be factors precipitating immune-related pneumonitis. The incidence of immune-related pneumonitis is reported to be higher in those treated

with PD-1 inhibitors than in those treated with anti-PD-L1 inhibitors. Early detection and diagnosis and appropriate management according to the severity are critical to improving the prognosis. The first-line physicians, including the primary responsible oncologists, family doctors, emergency physicians and NSCLC patients should be trained to identify and report symptoms of immune-related pneumonitis as early as possible. Multidisciplinary treatment teams involving clinicians (including ILD specialists and lung cancer specialists), radiologists and pathologists are recommended for the treatment of immune-related pneumonitis.