Treatment of metastatic melanoma: an overview.

Publication Type:

Journal Article


Oncology (Williston Park, N.Y.), Volume 23, Issue 6, p.488-96 (2009)


2009, Adoptive Transfer, Antibodies, Monoclonal, Antigens, CD, Antineoplastic Agents, Antineoplastic Combined Chemotherapy Protocols, Cancer Vaccines, Clinical Research Division, Humans, IMMUNOTHERAPY, Interferon Alfa-2b, Interleukin-2, MELANOMA, Prognosis, Skin Neoplasms


The 10-year survival rate for patients with metastatic melanoma is less than 10%. Although surgery and radiation therapy have a role in the treatment of metastatic disease, systemic therapy is the mainstay of treatment for most patients. Single-agent chemotherapy is well tolerated but is associated with response rates of only 5% to 20%. Combination chemotherapy and biochemotherapy may improve objective response rates but do not extend survival and are associated with greater toxicity. Immunotherapeutic approaches such as high-dose interleukin-2 are associated with durable responses in a small percentage of patients. In this article, we review the treatments for metastatic melanoma including promising investigational approaches.