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Imaging Tumor Blood Vessels Could Help Optimize Melanoma Treatment

Melanomas that have spread can be treated by cutting off their blood supplies, but this only works in some people. Now there may be a way to predict who this anti-angiogenic therapy will benefit, according to findings reported at the American Association for Cancer Research's 2013 meeting. The researchers analyzed computed tomography (CT) images of melanomas from 46 people who had undergone anti-angiogenic treatment. The images revealed that loss of tumor blood vessels was linked to survival, particularly in people who also had low levels of lactate dehydrogenase (LDH). Next, the researchers plan to test their findings in clinical studies.

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Science Daily│Apr 17, 2013

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Elesclomol May Benefit Chemotherapy-Treated Melanoma Patients with Normal LDH Levels

A phase III trial showed that the combination of elesclomol and paclitaxel did not benefit most people with melanoma. Elesclomol is an experimental drug that can kill cancer cells and paclitaxel is a chemotherapy drug. The trial included 651 people; the combination treatment was stopped early when it became clear that most of those treated with paclitaxel alone survived longer. Most of these people also had high levels of an enzyme called lactose dehydrogenase (LDH). Conversely, elesclomol did increase survival in people with normal levels of this enzyme, suggesting that LDH levels could be used to predict who would benefit from this combination treatment.

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Journal of Clinical Oncology │ Feb 11, 2013

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