Radiotherapy and immunotherapy: Can this combination change the prognosis of patients with melanoma brain metastases?

Research output: Contribution to journalReview article

Abstract

Brain metastases are a common occurrence in patients with melanoma. Prognosis is poor. Radiotherapy is the main local treatment for brain metastases. Recently, immunotherapy (i.e. immune checkpoints inhibitors) showed a significant impact on the prognosis of patients with metastatic melanoma, also in the setting of patients with brain metastases. Despite various possible treatments, survival of patients with melanoma brain metastases is still unsatisfactory; new treatment modalities or combination of therapies need to be explored. Being immunotherapy and radiotherapy alone both efficient in the treatment of melanoma brain metastases, the combination of these two therapies seems logical. Moreover radiotherapy can improve the efficacy of immunotherapy and the immune system plays a relevant role in the action of radiotherapy. Preclinical data support this combination. Clinical data are more contradictory. In this review, we will discuss available therapies for melanoma brain metastases, focusing on the preclinical and clinical available data supporting the possible synergism between radiotherapy and immunotherapy.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1-8
Number of pages8
JournalCancer Treatment Reviews
Volume50
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Nov 1 2016

Keywords

  • Checkpoint inhibitors
  • Immunotherapy
  • Radiation therapy
  • Stereotactic radiosurgery

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Medicine(all)
  • Oncology
  • Radiology Nuclear Medicine and imaging

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