No impact of NRAS mutation on features of primary and metastatic melanoma or on outcomes of checkpoint inhibitor immunotherapy. An italian melanoma intergroup (IMI) study.

The Italian Melanoma Intergroup (IMI) Study

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

Neuroblastoma RAS Viral Oncogen Homolog (NRAS) mutant melanoma is usually considered more aggressive and more responsive to checkpoint inhibitor immunotherapy (CII) than NRAS wildtype. We retrospectively recruited 331 metastatic melanoma patients treated with CII as first line: 162 NRAS-mutant/BRAF wild-type and 169 wt/wt. No substantial differences were observed among the two cohorts regarding the melanoma onset and disease-free interval. Also, overall response to CII, progression-free survival and overall survival were similar in the two groups. Therefore, our data do not show increased aggressiveness and higher responsiveness to CII in NRAS-mutant melanoma. The controversy in the published data could be due to different patient characteristics and treatment heterogeneity. We believe our data adds evidence to clear up these controversial issues. Aims: It is debated whether the NRAS-mutant melanoma is more aggressive than NRAS wildtype. It is equally controversial whether NRAS-mutant metastatic melanoma (MM) is more responsive to checkpoint inhibitor immunotherapy (CII). 331 patients treated with CII as first-line were retrospectively recruited: 162 NRAS-mutant/BRAF wild-type (mut/wt) and 169 wt/wt. We compared the two cohorts regarding the characteristics of primary and metastatic disease, disease-free interval (DFI) and outcome to CII. No substantial differences were observed between the two groups at melanoma onset, except for a more frequent ulceration in the wt/wt group (p = 0.03). Also, the DFI was very similar in the two cohorts. In advanced disease, we only found lung and brain progression more frequent in the wt/wt group. Regarding the outcomes to CII, no significant differences were reported in overall response rate (ORR), disease control rate (DCR), progression free survival (PFS) or overall survival (OS) (42% versus 37%, 60% versus 59%, 12 (95% CI, 7-18) versus 9 months (95% CI, 6-16) and 32 (95% CI, 23-49) versus 27 months (95% CI, 16-35), respectively). Irrespectively of mutational status, a longer OS was significantly associated with normal LDH, <3 metastatic sites, lower white blood cell and platelet count, lower neutrophil-to-lymphocyte (N/L) ratio. Our data do not show increased aggressiveness and higher responsiveness to CII in NRAS-mutant MM.

Original languageEnglish
Article number475
Pages (from-to)1-15
Number of pages15
JournalCancers
Volume13
Issue number3
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Feb 1 2021

Keywords

  • Checkpoint inhibitors
  • Immunotherapy
  • Melanoma
  • NRAS mutation

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Oncology
  • Cancer Research

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