In the past decade, the approach to patients with metastatic non-small-cell lung cancer has relied on chemotherapy and on targeted agents for molecularly selected subgroups of patients. Recent work has introduced immunotherapy as another area of progress, and likely as a new treatment paradigm in the near future. While the large Phase III studies with cancer vaccination with the current technologies remain at present disappointing, the immunomodulation strategies with immune checkpoint inhibitors have delivered remarkable results in expanded Phase I studies and are now intensively studied in large Phase III studies. This review summarizes the past decade of immunotherapy for non-small-cell lung cancer, gives an updated overview of trials in this field, and the context of future development in this exciting field.
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