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Am J Clin Oncol. 2002 Jun;25(3):283-6.

Phase II study of paclitaxel and carboplatin for malignant melanoma.

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  • 1Adult Oncology, Brigham and Women's Hospital and Harvard Medical School, Boston, Massachusetts, USA.


Conventional chemotherapy in the treatment of malignant melanoma has been disappointingly ineffective. Although the most active single agent is dacarbazine, numerous trials support the activity of platinum analogs against melanoma. Several recent trials also demonstrate the single-agent activity of paclitaxel, and support the administration of these agents together in the treatment of a number of solid tumors. We conducted a phase II study treating patients with metastatic melanoma with paclitaxel as a 3-hour infusion of 175 mg/m2, and carboplatin dosed to yield an area under the curve of 7.5 administered during 30 minutes. Patients were previously untreated or treated once with a regimen not including a platinum or taxane agent and had a performance status of 0 or 1. Seventeen patients (8 males; 9 females; average age 51) were enrolled. Thirty-three percent of patients had disease involving the skin, 40% lungs, 33% lymph nodes, 26% liver, and 13% other visceral organs. Anaphylactic reactions developed in two patients associated with paclitaxel infusion, and the patients were subsequently taken off the study. Of the 15 remaining patients, 3 (20%) had partial responses, 7 (47%) had stable disease, and 5 (33%) showed evidence of progressive disease. Eleven patients experienced grade III or IV hematologic toxicity. All treatment-related toxicities were reversible. There were no treatment-related deaths. The combination of paclitaxel and carboplatin has moderate activity against malignant melanoma, with expected reversible hematologic toxicities. Although not prospectively compared with single agents, the combination of paclitaxel and carboplatin may be a treatment option for some patients. Comparisons with other treatment regimens and the search for additional active compounds against melanoma are needed.

[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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