The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has approved Opdivo (nivolumab; Bristol-Myers Squibb) in combination with Yervoy (ipilimumab; Bristol-Myers Squibb) for the first-line treatment of adults with malignant pleural mesothelioma that cannot be removed by surgery.

Malignant pleural mesothelioma (MPM) is a life-threatening cancer of the lungs’ lining caused by inhaling asbestos fibers. MPM accounts for most mesothelioma diagnoses, and most patients have an unresectable tumor at time of diagnosis.

Opdivo and Yervoy are both monoclonal antibodies that, when combined, decrease tumor growth by enhancing T-cell function. This combination therapy was evaluated during a randomized open-label trial that demonstrated an improvement in overall survival for patients with MPM. The approval of the Opdivo/Yervoy combination is the second FDA-approved systemic therapy for mesothelioma.

Food and Drug Administration (FDA). FDA Approves Drug Combination for Treating Mesothelioma [news release]. October 2, 2020. Available at: click here. Accessed October 6, 2020.