Founded in 1993
  Year: 1999 | Volume: 7 | Issue: 4 | Pages: 171-176
  Review Article
  INTERFERONS IN THE THERAPY OF SOLID TUMORS. PART II. INTERFERONS AND MALIGNANT MELANOMA
Ljiljana VUCKOVIC-DEKIC, Nevenka STANOJEVIC-BAKIC
  DOI:
  Abstract:
  The peculiar biological properties of malignant melanoma (MM) and unsuccessfulness of standard oncological therapy led to new therapeutical approaches to this malignancy. The provocative immunological features of MM, and understanding that immune response may be a central determinant of the course of the disease, provided the rationale for introducing immunotherapy in the treatment of MM patients. This review summarizes the results of clinical studies that used interferon (IFN), either alone or in combination with other cytokines and/or chemotherapy, in the therapy of metastatic and resected primary MM. When used as monotherapy in metastatic MM, IFNa gave an overall response (OR) rate of 18%. In the few trials with IFNb or IFNg, poorer ORs were obtained (14% and 7%, respectively). The combination of IFN with interleukin-2 (IL-2), as well as with other immunomodulating agents, did not improve the OR of IFN monotherapy. A higher OR (mean 32%) was obtained with IFNa-polychemotherapy combinations, and even better one (mean 45%) when IL-2 was added to such therapy. All regimens, particularly multiagent combinations, were associated with considerable toxicities. In adjuvant setting (postsurgery primary MM), some encouraging results were reported; that depended on the stage of MM and doses of IFN. However, results of several large ongoing trials are still expected to confirm the benefit, if any, regarding the disease-free and overall survival, and the quality of life as well. Future investigations are needed to clarify the details of optimal biochemotherapeutic strategy, to lessen the marked toxicity, and to define the patient population that might benefit from IFN therapy.
  Key words: Interferon; Malignant melanoma; Immunotherapy
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Founder, owner and publisher: Oncology Institute of Vojvodina, Serbia
Online since 1997 (Abstracts only); 2000 (Abstracts and Full text)
ISSN: 0354-7310 eISSN: 1450-9520