Are there any ethnic differences in the efficacy and safety of immune checkpoint inhibitors for treatment of lung cancer?

Jiyun Lee, Jong-Mu Sun, Se-Hoon Lee, Jin Seok Ahn, Keunchil Park, Myung-Ju Ahn


Immunotherapy, especially immune checkpoint inhibitors, has revolutionized the treatment of non-small cell lung cancer. However, data on ethnic differences in response to these treatments are still lacking. We reviewed the currently available clinical data on immune checkpoint inhibitors and analyzed the ethnic difference in terms of treatment efficacies and side effects. Despite different epidemiology, genetic susceptibility and molecular profiles, Asian lung cancer patients demonstrated comparable outcomes to Western patients in terms of response rates and survival benefits. The incidence of immune-related adverse events has been reported with a higher incidence in Japanese patients, but was not consistent across other Asian patient populations, and warrants further investigation.