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Acta Derm Venereol. 2014 Jan;94(1):45-9. doi: 10.2340/00015555-1654.

Ipilimumab in melanoma patients with brain metastasis: a retro-spective multicentre evaluation of thirty-eight patients.

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  • 1Department of Dermatology, Toulouse III University and Larrey Hospital, 31059 Toulouse Cedex 9, France.


Treatment with ipilimumab, a monoclonal antibody that antagonizes cytotoxic T-lymphocyte antigen-4 (CTLA-4), results in improved survival of patients with stage IIIc-IV melanoma. However, there is a lack of data on the efficacy of ipilimumab in patients with brain metastases. To evaluate the efficacy of ipilimumab for the treatment of brain metastasis in melanoma, a multicentre, retrospective analysis of 38 patients with brain metastases in melanoma, treated with ipilimumab in the context of the French Expanded Access Program, was performed. Three patients had a 3 partial response, 5 stable disease, 15 disease progression and 15 patients died during the induction phase due to disease progression. Median overall survival was 101 days (range 54-154). The brain metastases control rate was 16% (6/38). Ipilimumab may be effective in a few patients with central nervous system metastasis. However, patients with brain metastases and a low life expectancy may not benefit sufficiently from treatment with ipilimumab.

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