|Molecular therapy : the journal of the American Society of Gene Therapy. 2012 Feb 21. pii: mt201227. doi: 10.1038/mt.2012.27. pmc: PMC3345981|
|Targeting CD20 in melanoma patients at high risk of disease recurrence.|
|Pinc A1, Somasundaram R, Wagner C, Hörmann M, Karanikas G, Jalili A, Bauer W, Brunner P, Grabmeier-Pfistershammer K, Gschaider M, Lai CY, Hsu MY, Herlyn M, Stingl G, Wagner SN|
Melanomas contain distinct cell subpopulations. Several of these subpopulations, including one expressing CD20, may harbor stem cell-like or tumor-initiating characteristics. We hypothesized that patients at high risk of disease recurrence could benefit from an adjuvant anti-CD20 therapy. Therefore, we initiated a small pilot trial to study the effect of the anti-CD20 antibody rituximab in a group of melanoma patients with stage IV metastatic disease who had been rendered without evident disease by way of surgery, chemotherapy and/or radiation therapy. The major objective was safety, while secondary objectives were description of recurrence-free intervals (RFI) and overall survival (OS). Nine patients received rituximab at 375 mg/m(2) qw for 4 weeks followed by a maintenance therapy every 8 weeks. Treatment was discontinued after 2 years or with disease recurrence. Treatment was well tolerated. After a median observation of 42 months, the median neither of RFI nor of OS has been reached. Despite therapy that ended after 2 years, six out of nine patients are still alive and five of them are recurrence-free. Though the patient number is too small for definitive conclusions, our data may represent a first example of the potential therapeutic value of targeting CD20(+) cell populations-at least for a subset of patients.
Publikations ID: 22354376