BMS’s encouraging clinical trial results in immuno-therapy for Yervoy (ipilimumab) and Yervoy in combination with PD-1 immune checkpoint inhibitor, nivolumab, is creating a lot of positive buz among physicians at the ASCO 2014 conference.
Following the clinical trial results release yesterday, Tweet volume relating to melanoma swelled, making #melanoma a top cancer discussed at ASCO, second only to breast cancer. See graphic below as at June 3, 2014 9:50 am EST:
When we look at Tweets relating to melanoma made only by physicians we see a positive sentiment with Yervoy/ipilimumab mentioned in 72% of Twitter posts.
This could very well be the first indicator of a seizmic shift in the midset toward immuno-therapy in melanoma. Recall from ASCO 2013 that many physicians left that conference expressing hope and optimism toward immuno therapy. However, most reported that their approach to treating metastatic melanoma would likely not change immediately, citing optimism does not equal clinical evidence. In other words, many were open to immuno-therapy, but few were true converts.
Coming out of yesterday, we see a different tone. The most common content citied and retweeted by physicians are the positive clinical outcomes relating to overall survival. For many, this may be the point of conversion that gives more physicians the confidence to consider and present immuno-therapy to a much wider range of patients.