Adjuvant Therapies in Nonmetastatic Renal-Cell Carcinoma: A Review of the Literature Academic Article uri icon

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  • To conduct a review of literature on adjuvant therapy in nonmetastatic renal-cell carcinoma (nmRCC) treated with nephrectomy and to describe the efficacy of adjuvant agents on cancer control outcomes. A review of the literature was performed in January 2018 to identify all studies evaluating adjuvant therapy in patients with nmRCC treated with nephrectomy using PubMed, Embase, Medline, and Cochrane Library databases. The following keywords were used: adjuvant therapy, renal-cell carcinoma, nonmetastatic, targeted molecular therapy, kidney cancer. The website was queried to identify ongoing trials. Traditional adjuvant therapy agents consisted of interferon α, interleukin 2, autologous tumor cell vaccines, and monoclonal antibodies. None provided survival benefit. Three contemporary studies (S-TRAC, ASSURE, and PROTECT) using targeted therapy compared sunitinib to placebo (S-TRAC), sunitinib or sorafenib to placebo (ASSURE), and pazopanib to placebo (PROTECT), with controversial results. In contrast to ASSURE and PROTECT, S-TRAC demonstrated improved disease-free survival. Several trials that use checkpoint immunotherapy agents or vascular endothelial growth factor receptor tyrosine kinase inhibitors are ongoing. Many traditional therapies have shown no success as adjuvant therapy for nmRCC after nephrectomy. Targeted adjuvant therapy for nmRCC after nephrectomy showed controversial results, and its routine use is not currently endorsed.


  • Bandini, Marco
  • Smith, Ariane
  • Marchioni, Michele
  • Pompe, Raisa S
  • Martel, Tristan F
  • Cindolo, Luca
  • Montorsi, Francesco
  • Shariat, Shahrokh F
  • Briganti, Alberto
  • Kapoor, Anil
  • Capitanio, Umberto
  • Karakiewicz, Pierre I

publication date

  • June 2018

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