The treatment of non-small-cell lung cancer (NSCLC) has advanced significantly in the last decades. Especially immune checkpoint inhibitors have shown inconceivable effect on enhancing host anti-tumor activity in NSCLC. However, the limitation of checkpoint blockade monotherapy seems unavoidable in most of the NSCLC patients and only ∼20% of them achieved response to monotherapy with immune checkpoint inhibitors. Thus combining immune checkpoint inhibitors with other agents with different action mechanisms holds a promise to revitalize NSCLC treatment, such as the combination of checkpoint inhibitors with angiogenesis inhibitors, or with chemotherapy, as well as the combination of two checkpoint inhibitors. Recently, various combinational strategies have been explored to setup promising combination regimens and to understand the action mechanisms. In this review, we summarize the suspected synergistic mechanisms of several combinational approaches by reviewing the available preclinical and clinical data. Then we discuss in light of the current knowledge of cancer biology and systems biology the important facets to be examined when setting up a framework for developing immunotherapy-based combination strategies.

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Keywords Cancer biology, Combination therapy, Immunotherapy, Non-small-cell lung cancer, Systems biology
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Journal Cancer Treatment Reviews
Li, X.-T. (Xue-Tao), Yang, J.-J. (Jin-Ji), Wu, Y.-L. (Yi-Long), & Hou, J. (Jun). (2018). Toward innovative combinational immunotherapy: A systems biology perspective. Cancer Treatment Reviews (Vol. 68, pp. 1–8). doi:10.1016/j.ctrv.2018.05.003