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Last Updated: 01/25/17

Information below provided by the Pharmaceutical Company.

Nivolumab (OPDIVO®)

Agent Description

Nivolumab is a human monoclonal antibody that blocks the interaction between PD-1 and its ligands, PD-L1 and PD-L2. Nivolumab is an IgG4 kappa immunoglobulin that has a calculated molecular mass of 146 kDa.

Mechanism of Action

Nivolumab is a human immunoglobulin G4 (IgG4) monoclonal antibody that binds to the PD-1 receptor and blocks its interaction with PD-L1 and PD-L2, releasing PD-1 pathway-mediated inhibition of the immune response, including the anti-tumor immune response. In syngeneic mouse tumor models, blocking PD-1 activity resulted in decreased tumor growth.


Nivolumab is a programmed death receptor-1 (PD-1) blocking antibody.

Molecular Targets



See package insert: External Link

Studies of Interest

Areas of interest:

  • Non-small cell lung cancer: studies evaluating sequencing, and methods for early assessment of response
  • Bladder: studies in various lines of therapy with nivolumab or nivolumab/ipilimumab plus standard of care (BCG, chemo)
  • Renal cell carcinoma: nivolumab plus bevacizumab in first line

Areas NOT of interest:

  • Nivolumab monotherapy in metastatic melanoma patients
  • Nivolumab monotherapy in adjuvant stage 3 melanoma patients (exception is special populations like mucosal and uveal)
  • Nivolumab combinations with radiation in melanoma
  • Nivolumab plus tyrosine kinase inhibitors in renal cell carcinoma
  • Nivolumab/ipilimumab/cabozantinib combination in renal cell carcinoma
  • Nivolumab plus sorafenib in hepatocellular carcinoma
  • Nivolumab in hepatocellular carcinoma patients potentially eligible for liver transplant
  • Nivolumab with epidermal growth factor receptor inhibitors or anaplastic lymphoma kinase inhibitors, or radiation (but interested in nivolumab with novel therapeutics) in non-small cell lung cancer

Information collaborator would like included in investigator proposals