Checkpoint inhibition in lymphoma

Gunjan L. Shah, Craig H. Moskowitz

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

3 Scopus citations


Checkpoint inhibition improves surveillance by the immune system and therefore outcomes in some lymphoma subtypes. In this review, we examine the available evidence regarding checkpoint inhibition in lymphoma by line of therapy. Although most published studies are in the setting of relapsed/refractory disease, several ongoing trials are looking at therapy in the upfront and second-line settings. Nivolumab and pembrolizumab have been approved for patients with relapsed or refractory Hodgkin lymphoma, whereas other programmed death 1 and programmed death ligand 1 monoclonal antibodies remain under investigation as single agents or in combination. Strategies to exploit various targets along these pathways with new forms of therapy or with traditional therapies are being developed. Amplification of chromosome 9p23-24 and other biomarkers are important correlative endpoints in several studies that could further the personalization of therapy. Immune-related adverse events are frequent, and vigilance is required for their diagnosis and treatment. The use of checkpoint inhibitors before and after allogeneic transplant can yield impressive results but can also increase the risk for graft-versus-host disease, so that mitigation strategies are needed. Overall, these agents have achieved excellent response rates with durable remissions in many lymphoma subtypes. The results of ongoing trials will yield additional options for patients.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)45-55
Number of pages11
JournalClinical Advances in Hematology and Oncology
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jan 2018
Externally publishedYes


  • Checkpoint inhibitor
  • Lymphoma
  • Nivolumab
  • PD-1
  • PD-L1
  • Pembrolizumab

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Hematology
  • Oncology


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