Viktor Grünwald, MD, PhD, on CLEAR Trial Subgroup Analyses of Pembrolizumab/Lenvatinib in RCC

CancerNetwork® sat down with Viktor Grünwald, MD, PhD, at the 2021 ASCO Annual Meeting to talk about how new data from the CLEAR trial serve to further inform clinicians about lenvatinib and pembrolizumab for first-line renal cell carcinoma.

At the 2021 American Society of Clinical Oncology (ASCO) Annual Meeting, CancerNetwork® spoke with Viktor Grünwald, MD, PhD, about a poster presentation on depth and response and efficacy data in patient subgroups treated in the phase 3 CLEAR trial (NCT02811861), which evaluated the combination of lenvatinib (Lenvima) and pembrolizumab (Keytruda) in patients with renal cell carcinoma (RCC) in the frontline setting.

The findings indicated that patients in different risk categories, as well as those with target kidney lesions showed consistent benefit with lenvatinib/pembrolizumab therapy versus sunitinib (Sutent). Grünwald further discussed how these data add to what’s already known about the combination in this setting.


The data from the risk categories are quite informative for daily life in the clinic. When you counsel a patient, you already do the dichotomy into the risk category which is either 1 risk factor or 0 risk factors. It is [informative regarding whether that] specific combination is a suitable approach for that patient. It also becomes important that we look into the subgroup of patients that have kidney lesions because you have some chronic disease in some of the patients. They come to your outpatient clinic, and they want to know [if it] is proper treatment. Something that we’ve seen is that we had similar impact in metastatic disease [and] in those who [had] kidney lesions. I think it’s a very good indicator on how potent those combinations are, in specific here for lenvatinib and pembrolizumab because they also impact those large and chunky tumors that are usually detected in the kidney.


Grünwald V, Powles T, Kopyltsov E, et al. Analysis of the CLEAR study in patients (pts) with advanced renal cell carcinoma (RCC): Depth of response and efficacy for selected subgroups in the lenvatinib (LEN) + pembrolizumab (PEMBRO) and sunitinib (SUN) treatment arms. J Clin Oncol. 2021;39(suppl 15):4560. doi:10.1200/JCO.2021.39.15_suppl.4560