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Review Article

Immunotherapy of Human Melanoma: Past, Present, Future


Keywan Mortezaee* and Jamal Majidpoor   Pages 1 - 22 ( 22 )


Immunotherapy with immune checkpoint inhibitors (ICIs) is a promising therapeutic schedule in advanced solid cancers. In this review, clinical trials from highly reputable journals are interpreted for safety and efficacy evaluation of the common anti-programmed death-1 (PD-1) inhibitor nivolumab and/or the most known anti-cytotoxic T lymphocyte-associated antigen-4 (CTLA-4) inhibitor ipilimumab in advanced melanoma. Current progress in the field of melanoma immunotherapy is the focus of this review. Solo nivolumab and combo nivolumab-ipilimumab show higher responses compared to solo ipilimumab or chemotherapy. BRAF and programmed death-ligand 1 (PDL1) expression states are seemingly not reliable biomarkers of response to ICI therapy in melanoma. Solo ipilimumab and particularly a combination of nivolumab-ipilimumab show higher adverse events (AEs) compared with solo nivolumab or chemotherapy. Besides, ICI therapy is safer in mucosal melanoma, but its efficacy is higher in the cutaneous subtype. Patients receiving combination regimens who are experiencing serious AEs can discontinue such regimens until recovery and still maintain clinical benefits. To conclude, combo nivolumab-ipilimumab represents more therapeutic advantages compared with solo nivolumab or ipilimumab, but the rate of AEs is higher for combination regimens. Resistance to combo nivolumab-ipilimumab demands the application of novel approaches to go with ICIs in melanoma immunotherapy. Immunogenic agents, alternative immune checkpoints, vaccination, oncolytic viruses, extracellular vesicles (EVs) and fecal microbiome transplantation (FMT) are novel strategies in patients developing ICI resistance.


nivolumab-ipilimumab,melanoma,programmed death-ligand 1 (PD-L1),programmed death-1 (PD-1),adverse event (AE)


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