Expert Describes Direct Tumor Killing Strategies in Renal Cell Carcinoma


Probiotics and other agents targeting fatty acid oxidation are also under evaluation as treatment options for patients with renal cell carcinoma, according to Rana R. McKay, MD.

During the 2023 Kidney Cancer Research Summit (KCRS), Rana R. McKay, MD spoke with CancerNetwork® about novel antibody-drug conjugates (ADCs), radioligands, and other agents that may play a role in inducing direct tumor killing in renal cell carcinoma (RCC).

McKay, a board-certified medical oncologist and associate professor in the Department of Medicine at University of California, San Diego Health, indicated that ADCs are particularly promising, especially when considering the limited role chemotherapy has played in this patient population. Based on this, she stated that she looks forward to seeing the class of drug’s future role within the RCC space. Moreover, she highlighted that 177Lu-girentuximab, which is designed to target carbonic anhydrase IX (CA9)-expressing cells, is one radioligand that may benefit patients with RCC. Other potential therapy options that are under investigation include agents that induce both CDK4/6 and VEGF inhibition and probiotics that target fatty acid oxidation.


With regard to strategies for direct tumor killing—whether that be through an [ADC] that’s linked to a specific payload, several [of which] are currently in testing—it’s going to be interesting to see what role the [ADCs] play because, quite honestly, chemotherapy doesn’t really have a tremendous role in kidney cancer.

But there are radioligand therapies that are being developed, specifically targeted radioligand therapy. There’s excitement around 177Lu-girentuximab, which is a CA9 monoclonal antibody expressed on RCC linked to a beta emitting particle that allows for cell killing. And there are strategies to target CDK4/6 inhibition in combination with VEGF or HIF inhibition. Additionally, there are strategies of other targets looking at probiotics and other agents that target fatty acid oxidation. [There is also] an AXL decoy receptor that’s currently in testing. It’s going to be exciting to see what happens with all of these agents.


McKay RR. Novel therapies. Presented at: 2023 Kidney Cancer Research Summit; July 13-14, 2023; Boston, MA.

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