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Expert Rev Anticancer Ther. 2018 Feb;18(2):121-130. doi: 10.1080/14737140.2018.1421460. Epub 2018 Jan 3.

How to use neoadjuvant medical treatment to maximize surgery in melanoma.

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a Center for Dermatooncology, Department of Dermatology , University Hospital Tübingen , Tübingen , Germany.


The aim of this work is to discuss the role of neoadjuvant therapy in melanoma patients, namely the potential to improve control and surgical resectability of locoregional disease. Moreover, potential survival benefits for high-risk stage III and IV melanoma patients will be addressed. Areas covered: In this review, the different available neoadjuvant treatments including chemotherapy, bio-chemotherapy, targeted therapy, immunotherapy and local therapy will be presented and discussed. The PubMed published articles were identified and searched using the following terms located in the publication title: neoadjuvant therapy and melanoma. Studies investigating targeted therapy, immunotherapy and local melanoma treatments were included. was also used as a source for recruiting or ongoing but not recruiting neoadjuvant clinical trials, for which no published results are available. Expert commentary: Targeted therapy and immunotherapy in a neoadjuvant setting are still under investigation and not yet approved, however several neoadjuvant trials are ongoing. Shortly, results from these trials will answer the question whether neoadjuvant treatment translates into survival benefit and improves local disease control in stage III and IV melanoma patients. Immunotherapy and targeted therapy will play as relevant a role as in the metastatic setting, whereas chemotherapy will be used seldom.


Cutaneous melanoma; IL2; T-VEC; chemotherapy; immunotherapy; neoadjuvant therapy; targeted therapy

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