Sabatolimab Appears Promising for Combination Use With HMAs in AML, MDS

Andrew M. Brunner, MD, shares his key take home message from a phase 1b clinical trial investigating sabatolimab as treatment of patients with acute myeloid leukemia, as well as high-risk myelodysplastic syndrome.

Andrew M. Brunner, MD, medical oncologist, Massachusetts General Hospital Cancer Center, shares his key take home message from a phase 1b clinical trial (NCT03066648) investigating the novel TIM-3-targeting IgG4 antibody sabatolimab in combination with hypomethylating agents as treatment of patients with acute myeloid leukemia (AML), as well as high-risk myelodysplastic syndrome (MDS).

Considering sabatolimab and its role in the MDS space, Brunner says there is an opportunity for new combination strategies that have a higher chance of getting these patients into remission. For most patients with MDS or AML, their treatment is monotherapy, which has a low chance of getting patients to remission. There are now a number of agents in the field that are showing promise in combination with azacitidine, and as these agents get into larger trials, more patients will stay on study. This means the with some of the earlier combinations, the toxicity of the combination limited the ability to administer both together, but we have therapeutics that can be combined safely for patients, including older and more frail patients, Brunner says.

Overall, Brunner’s key takeaway is that the combination is safe, and sabatolimab appears promising for combination use considering there is less severe immune-related toxicity. It can be combined safely with an azacitidine backbone, so other doublet backbones are being developed in AML, MDS, and CMML that are in different phases of therapy, which is promising, Brunner says.