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Camrelizumab Plus Apatinib in Patients With Recurrent or Metastatic Nasopharyngeal Carcinoma: An Open-Label, Single-Arm, Phase II Study

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Immune checkpoint inhibitors combined with antiangiogenic therapy reportedly have potential synergistic antitumor activity. We investigated the activity and safety of this regimen for recurrent/metastatic nasopharyngeal carcinoma (NPC).


This single-arm, Simon two-stage study enrolled patients with recurrent/metastatic NPC who were refractory to at least first-line systemic therapy and treatment-naive to immune checkpoint inhibitors. The patients received camrelizumab 200 mg once every 3 weeks and apatinib 250 mg once per day. The primary end point was the objective response rate. Key secondary end points included disease control rate, progression-free survival, duration of response, overall survival, and safety.


Between October 14, 2020, and December 23, 2021, 58 patients were enrolled, and all were included in the efficacy and safety analysis set. The objective response rate was 65.5% (95% CI, 51.9 to 77.5), and the disease control rate was 86.2% (95% CI, 74.6 to 93.9). The median duration of response was not reached, and the median progression-free survival was 10.4 months (95% CI, 7.2 to 13.6), with a median follow-up duration of 12.4 months (range, 2.1-19.9 months). Treatment-related adverse events (TRAEs) of grade 3 or higher were reported in 34 (58.6%) patients, with the most common being hypertension (19.0%), nasopharyngeal necrosis (15.5%), headache (12.1%), AST elevation (10.3%), and creatine phosphokinase elevation (10.3%). Sixteen (27.6%) patients discontinued apatinib treatment before progression because of unbearable TRAEs, and the most common complication was nasopharyngeal necrosis (9/16; 56.3%). Recurrent nasopharyngeal lesions (odds ratio, 5.94 [95% CI, 1.45 to 24.24]) and reirradiation (odds ratio, 5.33 [95% CI, 1.15 to 24.79]) were significantly positively correlated with nasopharyngeal necrosis.


Camrelizumab plus apatinib had promising antitumor activity in patients with refractory recurrent/metastatic NPC who failed first-line therapy. Moderate to severe TRAEs were experienced by 58.6%, including nasopharyngeal necrosis associated with local recurrence and a history of reirradiation.

Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: , ,

Publication date: May 10, 2023

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