Tuesday, June 3, 2014

Combination therapy boosts overall survival of deadly melanoma

CANCER DIGEST – June 3, 2014 – A new combination immunotherapy for melanoma that has spread to other parts of the body put up some impressive survival numbers in an early stage study presented at the annual meeting of the American Society of Clinical Oncologists in Chicago. The drugs ipilimumamb and nivolumab nearly doubled the overall survival rates seen with the best of current treatments. In the study of 53 patients 85 percent survived one year, and 79 percent were still alive after two years. The median overall survival was 40 months. That compares to a median overall survival of about 24 month for current therapies according to lead author of the study Dr. Mario Sznol of Yale University School of Medicine. The drugs target tumor proteins that allow cancer cells to evade the immune system, thus allowing the immune system to attack the cancer. 

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