Genetic Mutation Predicts Responses to Immunotherapy in Melanoma

Source: Oncology Learning Network, December 2o18

For patients with melanoma, the presence of a CDKN2A mutation may prognosticate improved responses to immunotherapy because of increased tumor mutational load, which leads to more neoantigens and stronger anti-tumor immune responses, according to results from a recent clinical trial (J Med Genet. 2018 Oct 5. Epub ahead of print).

“Inherited CDKN2A mutation is a strong risk factor for cutaneous melanoma. Moreover, carriers have been found to have poor melanoma-specific survival,” explained lead investigator Hildur Helgadottir, MD, PhD, Department of Oncology Pathology, Karolinska Institutet and Karolinska University Hospital Solna, Stockholm, Sweden, and colleagues.

Although the emergence of effective immunotherapies in recent years have improved the treatment landscape for melanoma, a significant number of patients with the disease do not respond to immunotherapy.

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