Immunotherapy: The Wave of the Future in Bladder Cancer?

This article reviews the role of immunotherapy in the treatment of locally advanced and metastatic urothelial cell carcinoma (UC). It describes the basic principles of cancer immunotherapy, as they relate to management of UC, and summarizes clinical data on current and investigational therapeutic approaches. Two immune checkpoint inhibitors are now approved for treatment of advanced UC in the United States, and the article discusses their unique response patterns and side effect profiles to help oncology clinicians appropriately incorporate these agents into patient care.


This activity has been designed to meet the educational needs of health care professionals involved in the diagnosis, treatment, or management of patients with bladder cancer.


Upon completion of this activity, participants will be better able to do the following:

  1. Describe the basic principles of immunotherapy specifically as they relate to management of bladder cancer and its pathophysiology
  2. Discuss how to appropriately incorporate emerging immunologic treatments into the management of patients with advanced or metastatic urothelial bladder cancer


Daniel P. Petrylak, MD
Professor of Medicine and Urology, Department of Medical Oncology
Yale University
New Haven, CT

Disclosure of Conflicts of Interest

It is the policy of the Elsevier Office of Continuing Medical Education that all faculty, instructors, and planners disclose real or apparent conflicts of interest relating to the topics of this educational activity. 

The faculty reported the following financial relationships or relationships to products or devices they or their spouse/life partner have with commercial interests related to the content of this CME activity:

FacultyRelationship Identified With:

Daniel P. Petrylak, MD

Consultant/Advisor: Bayer AG, Bellicum Pharmaceuticals, Inc., Exelixis, Inc., Ferring Pharmaceuticals, F. Hoffmann-La Roche Ltd, Johnson & Johnson Services, Inc., Millennium Health, Medivation, Inc., Pfizer Inc., sanofi-aventis U.S. LLC., Tyme Technologies, Inc.

Grant/Research Support: Agensys, Inc., Celgene Corporation, Eli Lilly and Company, F. Hoffmann-La Roche Ltd, Johnson & Johnson Services, Inc., Merck & Co., Inc., Millennium Health, Progenics Pharmaceuticals, Inc., OncoGenex Pharmaceuticals Inc., sanofi-aventis U.S. LLC.

Non-faculty: Jacqui Brooks, MBBCh, MRCPsych; Faith Reidenbach, CMPP, CHCP; Leslie Treff, JD; Sandy Breslow; Alison Kemp; Leah Johnson; and Bernard M. Abrams, MD, hereby state that neither they nor their spouse/life partner have had any financial relationships to products or devices with any commercial interest related to the content of this activity of any amount during the past 12 months.

Financial Support

This activity is supported by an independent educational grant from Genentech.

Provider Information

Jointly provided by the Elsevier Office of Continuing Medical Education and RMEI Medical Education, LLC.


CME Credit (Physicians)

This activity has been planned and implemented in accordance with the accreditation requirements and policies of the Accreditation Council for Continuing Medical Education (ACCME) through the joint providership of the Elsevier Office of Continuing Medical Education and RMEI Medical Education, LLC. The Elsevier Office of Continuing Medical Education is accredited by the ACCME to provide continuing medical education for physicians.

The Elsevier Office of Continuing Medical Education designates this enduring activity for a maximum of 1.0 AMA PRA Category 1 Credit(s)™. Physicians should claim only the credit commensurate with the extent of their participation in the activity.


For all CME inquiries or special needs, please contact

Disclosure of Unlabeled Use: This educational activity may contain discussion of published and/or investigational uses of agents that are not indicated by the FDA. The Elsevier Office of Continuing Medical Education, RMEI Medical Education, LLC, and Genentech do not recommend the use of any agent outside of the labeled indications.

Disclaimer: Participants have an implied responsibility to use the newly acquired information to enhance patient outcomes and their own professional development. The information presented in this activity is not meant to serve as a guideline for patient management. Any procedures, medications, or other courses of diagnosis or treatment discussed or suggested in this activity should not be used by clinicians without evaluation of their patient’s conditions and possible contraindications on dangers in use, review of any applicable manufacturer’s product information, and comparison with recommendations of other authorities.

Acknowledgments: The author would like to thank Faith Reidenbach, CMPP, CHCP; Jacqui Brooks, MBBCh, MRCPsych; and Leslie Treff, JD, for their assistance in writing and editing this manuscript. The individuals mentioned report no potential conflicts of interest and have given their written permission to be named.

Course summary
Available credit: 
  • 1.00 AMA PRA Category 1 Credit(s)™
  • 1.00 Non-physician
Course opens: 
Course expires: 

Available Credit

  • 1.00 AMA PRA Category 1 Credit(s)™
  • 1.00 Non-physician
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