“A new drug that boosts the immune system’s cancer-fighting potential is showing early promise for some patients with advanced lung cancer.
“The drug, marketed as Keytruda, was recently approved in the United States for treating advanced melanoma, but is not yet approved for lung cancer.
“Still, experts were encouraged by preliminary findings reported Sunday at the annual meeting of the American Association for Cancer Research in Philadelphia, and published simultaneously in the New England Journal of Medicine.
“In a study of nearly 500 patients with advanced lung cancer, those with high levels of a particular protein in their tumor cells responded well to the drug, researchers reported.
“Close to half of these patients saw their tumors shrink, and so far, the effect has typically lasted beyond a year.”