Cost-effectiveness of atezolizumab plus chemotherapy for advanced non-small-cell lung cancer

Shen Lin, Shaohong Luo, Lixian Zhong, Shubin Lai, Dayong Zeng, Xin Rao, Pinfang Huang, Xiuhua Weng

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

25 Scopus citations


Background Adding atezolizumab to carboplatin/nab-paclitaxel improved progression-free survival and overall survival in patients with advanced non-squamous non-small-cell lung cancer. However, estimating the economy of atezolizumab/carboplatin/nab-paclitaxel is urgent on account of the high cost of atezolizumab. Objective This study aimed to evaluate the cost-effectiveness of atezolizumab plus carboplatin/nab- paclitaxel for untreated advanced non-squamous non-small-cell lung cancer from the United States payer perspective. Setting This study was based on randomized clinical trial data from the IMpower130 (NCT02367781) published in Lancet Oncology (May 2019). Method A Markov model was constructed to estimate the health expenditure on atezolizumab in combination with carboplatin/nab-paclitaxel for advanced non-small-cell lung cancer treatment. Drug costs were collected from Red Book Wholesale Acquisition Cost, and health state utility values were obtained from the literature. Uncertainty was evaluated via one-way and probabilistic sensitivity analyses. Main outcome measure The main outcomes were cost, life years, quality-adjusted life years, and incremental cost-effectiveness ratio. Results Over a 10-year horizon, atezolizumab/carboplatin/nab-paclitaxel treatment was associated with an expected 1.76 life years and 0.99 quality-adjusted life years compared to the 1.21 life years and 0.67 quality-adjusted life years for carboplatin/nab-paclitaxel alone. Compared to carboplatin/nab-paclitaxel, atezolizumab/carboplatin/nab-paclitaxel produced an incremental cost of $105,617. The resultant incremental cost-effectiveness ratio was $333,199 per quality-adjusted life year, which exceeded the willingness-to-pay threshold of $180,000 per quality-adjusted life year. The price of atezolizumab and utility values were the parameters that greatly impacted the incremental cost-effectiveness ratio. Carboplatin/nab-paclitaxel exhibited 98.6% probability of being a cost-effective treatment option compared to atezolizumab/carboplatin/nab-paclitaxel at a willingness-to-pay of $180,000 per quality-adjusted life year. However, reducing atezolizumab acquisition cost by 43.4% could make atezolizumab/carboplatin/nab-paclitaxel more cost-effective than carboplatin/nab-paclitaxel. Conclusion Adding atezolizumab to carboplatin/nab-paclitaxel was not cost-effective for advanced non-squamous non-small-cell lung cancer in the base-case scenario. Decreasing atezolizumab acquisition cost might enhance the cost-effectiveness.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1175-1183
Number of pages9
JournalInternational Journal of Clinical Pharmacy
Issue number4
StatePublished - Aug 1 2020


  • Atezolizumab
  • Cost-effectiveness
  • First-line therapy
  • Non-squamous non-small-cell lung cancer

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pharmacy
  • Toxicology
  • Pharmacology
  • Pharmaceutical Science
  • Pharmacology (medical)


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