Three new drugs can significantly increase survival rates in patients with metastatic melanoma.
Yervoy (ipilimumab) is a novel type of cancer drug that works by unleashing the body’s own immune system to fight a tumor.
Vermurafenib targets the V600E mutation in a gene called BRAF, which is involved in cell growth. One study showed this oral medication decreased the risk of death by 63%.
On August 17th, Zelboraf, won approval from the FDA for melanoma patients with tumors with a genetic mutation known as BRAF V600E. It was approved with a test that can determine if a patient’s cancer has the mutation. The mutation produces a version of a protein that is normally involved in regulating cell growth. The protein is mutated in about half of patients with advanced melanoma.
These three important advances in the treatment of melanoma could lead to a combination approach.
Anna C. Pavlick, DO gave a talk at the 2011 Annual Mollie Biggane Melanoma Foundation Golf Outing about the recent advancements of new life saving drugs (Yervoy-Ipilimumab and Zelbraf-Vemurafenib) that can significantly increase survival rates in patients with metastatic melanoma.
New Drugs (Yervoy-Ipilimumab and Zelbraf-Vemurafenib)
Anna C. Pavlick, DO
Associate Professor, Department of Medicine (Oncology) and the Ronald O. Perelman Department of Dermatology