Chronic Use of Proton Pump Inhibitors Is Associated With an Increased Risk of Immune Checkpoint Inhibitor Colitis in Renal Cell Carcinoma

Jianyi Yin, Roy Elias, Lan Peng, Nicholas Levonyak, Annapoorani Asokan, Alana Christie, Nisa Kubiliun, James Brugarolas, Hans J. Hammers

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

2 Scopus citations


Introduction: Immune checkpoint inhibitors (ICIs) have become a standard of care in metastatic renal cell carcinoma (mRCC) but are associated with immune-related adverse events (irAEs) including colitis. Growing evidence suggests proton pump inhibitors (PPIs) increase the risk of inflammatory bowel disease (IBD). Given the pathophysiological overlap between IBD and ICI colitis, we sought to evaluate the relationship between PPI use and ICI colitis in mRCC patients. Patients and Methods: We performed a retrospective study of adult patients who received ICI therapy for mRCC between 2015 and 2018 at University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center affiliated hospitals. Clinical characteristics, oncological outcomes, ICI colitis details, and PPI use details were collected by manual chart review. The diagnosis of ICI colitis was made via biopsy when available, or by clinical criteria (symptoms and response to immunosuppressive therapy) when biopsy specimens were unavailable or inconclusive. Univariable and multivariable logistic regression analyses were conducted to assess the potential contribution of PPIs to ICI colitis. Results: A total of 176 patients received ICI therapy for mRCC, of which 16 (9.1%) were diagnosed with ICI colitis. Patients with ICI colitis presented with elevated stool lactoferritin and calprotectin and a wide range of endoscopic and histologic findings. There were no significant differences between patients with and without ICI colitis in age, gender, medical comorbidities, RCC history, and overall survival. However, exposure to ipilimumab and PPI use were more frequently observed in patients with ICI colitis than those without. In univariable and multivariable logistic regression analyses, exposure to ipilimumab and chronic use of PPIs > 8 weeks were significantly associated with ICI colitis. Conclusion: In addition to ipilimumab use, chronic use of PPIs may be associated with ICI colitis in patients with mRCC.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)260-269
Number of pages10
JournalClinical Genitourinary Cancer
Issue number3
StatePublished - Jun 2022


  • Colitis
  • Immunotherapy
  • Kidney Cancer
  • Proton Pump Inhibitor

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Oncology
  • Urology


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