Background: The incidence of brain metastases (BM) in melanoma patients is common and associated with poor prognosis. MAP-kinase inhibitors and immunologic checkpoint blockade antibodies led to improved survival of metastatic melanoma patients; however, patients with BM are under-represented or excluded from the majority of clinical trials and the impact of new drugs on their survival is less clear. With the present systematic review, we aimed to analyze outcomes of patients with melanoma BM treated with the new drugs, both in the setting of phase I-II-III clinical trials and in the "real world". Methods: An electronic search was performed to identify studies reporting survival outcomes of patients with melanoma BM treated with MAP-kinase inhibitors and/or immunologic checkpoint blockade antibodies, regardless of study design. Results: Twenty-two studies were included for a total of 2153 patients. Median OS was 7.9 months in phase I-II-III trials and 7.7 months in "real world" studies. In clinical trials, median OS was 7.0 months for patients treated with immunotherapy and 7.9 months for patients treated with BRAF inhibitors. In "real world" studies, median OS was 4.3 months and 7.7 months for patients treated with immunotherapy and BRAF inhibitors, respectively. Evidence of clinical activity exists for both immunotherapy and MAP-kinase inhibitors. Conclusions: MAP-kinase inhibitors and immunologic checkpoint blockade antibodies have clinical activity and may achieve improved OS in patients with metastatic melanoma and BM. These results support the inclusion of patients with BM in investigations of new agents and new treatment regimens for metastatic melanoma.
- Brain metastases
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Radiology Nuclear Medicine and imaging