Read about cancer treatment options listed by gene mutation, type of cancer and type of treatment.

Immunotherapies used to treat cancer

Immunotherapies are used to treat a portion of patients for almost every type of cancer. Some immunotherapies only work for a select group of people whose tumors express certain features. Tumor biomarker tests can help determine which patients are more or less likely to benefit from these therapies. 

The choice of immunotherapies vary by cancer type, stage and situation. Many of the available immunotherapies are used for advanced or metastatic cancers. Visit the Cancer Treatment by Cancer Type section for more information on immunotherapies for a specific type of cancer.

The following are common immunotherapies. This is not a complete list of all immunotherapies or indications. Speak with your doctor about other treatments which may be available.


Immune checkpoint inhibitors

Immunotherapy Cancer type Indication Biomarker
Keytruda (pembrolizumab)  Metastatic or unresectable solid tumors       For treatment of solid tumors that have progressed after treatment and for which there are no other treatment options Microsatellite Instability High (MSI-H) or Mismatch Repair Deficiency (MMR-D
Metastatic or unresectable solid tumors For the treatment of solid tumors that have progressed following prior treatment and who have no satisfactory alternative treatment options Tumor Mutational Burden High (TMB-H)
Metastatic Triple-Negative Breast Cancer Combined with chemotherapy for treatment of locally recurrent unresectable or metastatic triple negative breast cancer Triple-Negative Breast Cancer and PD-L1-positive 
Metastatic or  unresectable colorectal cancer For first-line treatment of metastatic or unresectable colorectal cancer Microsatellite Instability High (MSI-H) or Mismatch Repair Deficiency (MMR-D
Metastatic or unresectable colorectal cancer   Cancer that has progressed following treatment with a fluoropyrimidine, oxaliplatin, and irinotecan Microsatellite Instability High (MSI-H) or Mismatch Repair Deficiency (MMR-D
Advanced endometrial cancer  Combined with Lenvima (lenvatinib) for patients whose cancer has progressed after prior therapy and who are not candidatesfor surgery or radiation  Negative for Mismatch Repair Deficiency (MMR-D) or negative for Microsatellite Instability (MSI-High)
Metastatic or unresectable melanoma For the treatment of patients with metastatic melanoma No biomarker required
Melanoma For the adjuvant treatment of patients with involvement of lymph node(s) following complete resection No biomarker required
Opdivo 
(nivolumab) 
Metastatic colorectal cancer As a single agent or in combination with Yervoy (ipilimumab) for cancer that has progressed following treatment with a fluoropyrimidine, oxaliplatin, and irinotecan Microsatellite Instability High (MSI-H) or Mismatch Repair Deficiency (MMR-D
Metastatic or unresectable melanoma As a single agent or combined with ipilimumab No biomarker required
Metastatic or lymph node positive melanoma For the adjuvant treatment of patients following complete resection No biomarker required
Tecentriq (atezolizumab) Metastatic breast cancer Combined with Abraxane (protein-bound paclitaxel)  Triple-negative (ER/PR-negative and Her2-negative)
PD-L1-positive
Yervoy (ipilumumab) Metastatic colorectal cancer Combined with Opdivo (nivolumab) for cancer that has progressed following treatment with a fluoropyrimidine, oxaliplatin, and irinotecan Microsatellite Instability High (MSI-H) or Mismatch Repair Deficiency (MMR-D
Metastatic or unresectable melanoma For the treatment of patients with metastatic melanoma No biomarker required
Melanoma Adjuvant treatment of patients with cutaneous melanoma with pathologic involvement of regional lymph nodes of more than 1 mm who have undergone complete resection, including total lymphadenectomy No biomarker required

 


Monoclonal antibiodies

Immunotherapy Cancer type Indication Biomarker Type of agent
Avastin
(bevacizumab)
 
Stage 2-4 ovarian,
fallopian tube or primary peritoneal  cancer

Combined with Lynparza (olaparib) for first-line, maintenance therapy for platinum-sensitive cancer

Homologous Recombination
Deficiency (HRD)
testing

Monoclonal antibody targeting vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF)
Stage 3-4 ovarian, fallopian tube or primary peritoneal cancer Combined with chemotherapy, followed by Avastin as a single agent following initial surgical resection No biomarker required      Monoclonal antibody targeting vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF)
Recurrent ovarian, fallopian tube or primary peritoneal cancer Combined with chemotherapy for platinum-resistant recurrent disease who received no more than 2 prior chemotherapy regimens No biomarker required Monoclonal antibody targeting vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF)
Recurrent ovarian, fallopian tube or primary peritoneal cancer Combined with chemotherapy, followed by Avastin as a single agent, for platinum-sensitive recurrent diesase No biomarker required Monoclonal antibody targeting vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF)
Metastatic colorectal cancer Combined with intravenous 5-fluorouracil-based chemotherapy for first- or second-line treatment No biomarker required Monoclonal antibody targeting vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF)
Metastatic colorectal cancer In combination with chemotherapy for second-line treatment in patients who have progressed on a first-line Avastin-containing regimen No biomarker required Monoclonal antibody targeting vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF)
Cyramza
(ramucirumab)
Metastatic colorectal cancer Combined with FOLFIRI chemotherapy, for treatment after disease progression on, or after prior therapy with bevacizumab, oxaliplatin, and a fluoropyrimidine No biomarker required Monoclonal antibody targeting vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF)
Erbitux
(cetuximab)
Metastatic colorectal cancer Combined with FOLFIRI for first-line treatment, or combined with irinotecan for cancers that no longer respond to irinotecan-based chemotherapy or as a single agent in patients who have progressed after oxaliplatin- and irinotecan-based chemotherapy EGFR positive and KRAS mutation negative Monoclonal antibody targeting epidermal growth factor receptor (EGFR)
Herceptin
(trastuzumab) 
Breast cancer The treatment of Her2-positive breast cancer Her2 overexpression (Her2-positive) Antibody targeting Her2 receptors
Kadcyla
(trastuzumab emtansine)
Breast cancer Adjuvant treatment of patients with HER2-positive early breast cancer who have residual invasive disease after neoadjuvant taxane and trastuzumab-based treatment Her2 overexpression (Her2-positive) Antibody-drug conjugate targeting Her2 receptors
  
Perjeta (pertuzumab)
Breast cancer Combined with Herceptin (trastuzumab) and docetaxel as neoadjuvant treatment of patients with HER2-positive, locally advanced, inflammatory, or early stage breast cancer Her2 overexpression (Her2-positive) Antibody targeting Her2 receptors
Phesgo (pertuzumab, trastuzumab combined injection) Breast cancer

Prior to surgery (neoadjuvant treatment) when the tumor is greater than 2 cm in diameter or node-positive or after surgery (adjuvant treatment) for early breast cancer that has a high likelihood of coming back

Her2 overexpression (Her2-positive) Antibody targeting Her2 receptors
Trodelvy (sacituzumab govitecan-hziy) Metastatic breast cancer For metastatic breast cancer that progressed, recurred or did not respond to at least two previous lines of treatment Triple-negative (ER/PR-negative, Her2-negative) Antibody-drug conjugate (chemotherapy attached to antibody found in TNBC)
Vectibix
(panitumumab)
Metastatic colorectal cancer Combined with FOLFOX for first-line treatment Negative for KRAS and NRAS tumor mutation Monoclonal antibody targeting epidermal growth factor receptor (EGFR)
Metastatic colorectal cancer As a single therapy following disease progression after prior treatment with fluoropyrimidine, oxaliplatin, and irinotecan-containing chemotherapy Negative for KRAS and NRAS tumor mutations Monoclonal antibody targeting epidermal growth factor receptor (EGFR)

 

Nonspecific immunotherapies

Immunotherapy Cancer type Indication
Proleukin® (aldesleukin) Metastatic melanoma For the treatment of patients with metastatic melanoma
Intron A Melanoma As adjuvant to surgical treatment in patients 18 years of age or older with melanoma who are free of disease but at high risk for systemic recurrence, within 56 days of surgery
Sylatron Melanoma As adjuvant treatment of melanoma with nodal involvement within 84 days of surgery

 

Cancer vaccines

Immunotherapy Cancer type Indication Biomarker
Provenge (sipuleucel-T) Metastatic castration resistant prostate cancer (mCRPC) For the treatment of asymptomatic or minimally symptomatic metastatic castrate resistant prostate cancer No biomarker required
Imlygic (T-VEC or talimogene laherparepvec) Unresectable recurrent melanoma For local treatment of cutaneous, subcutaneous, and nodal lesions in patients with melanoma recurrent after initial surgery No biomarker required