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Semin Oncol. 2002 Oct;29(5):413-26.

Systemic chemotherapy for the treatment of metastatic melanoma.

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Division of Hematology/Oncology, University of California, San Diego, CA, USA.


The role of systemic chemotherapy in the treatment of patients with metastatic melanoma remains of questionable benefit. Despite encouraging phase II data from multiple institutions that suggested an improved overall response rate for patients treated with the Dartmouth regimen, recently completed phase III trials have failed to demonstrate a significant benefit in survival. Of concern is the fact that there have been relatively few new chemotherapeutic agents in the past several years that have demonstrated any activity in this disease. More recently there has been a shift away from combination chemotherapy to biochemotherapy. However, this approach has yet to be clearly defined as superior. The basis for optimism in the future in this field resides in the realm of molecular oncology. As mechanisms of resistance are identified, new molecules such as antisense oligonucleotides may provide the basis for increasing the sensitivity of melanoma to chemotherapeutic and/or immunotherapeutic treatments.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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