Alternative to Interferon?

Posted By
9/17/2012 4:52pm
Replies: 6

Will there ever be an alternative to Interferon? Are we even close?

This wait and watch is killing me, but Interferon does not have the best outcome.

I am not up to date on the recent advances. Are there any?

Anonymous - (9/17/2012 - 6:44pm)

You might be able to find a stage three trial in your area at

Charlie S - (9/17/2012 - 8:06pm)

It is a slow march to an alternative for Stage III patients beyond Interferon Alpha 2- B Recombinant for injection, but here are some options. 

One option is an ongoing randomized clinical trial  for  surgically reseceted Stage III melanoma that is comparing Yervoy to Interferon.  Here is the link to this trial.

The risk of course is that this is a randomized Stage II trial so you may or may not get ipilimumab; of course the patient should be able to determine intuitively which drug is being used.  You may also opt out of the trial at any time.

This is a link to all trials involving Stage III patients that should be current.

There has been use of and ongoing study of GMCSF ( granulocye and macrophage colony stimulation factor......which is Leukin ) that some have had success with as an option to Intron.

This "outcome" discussion always bugs me, because Intron is billed to delay, not prevent recurrence,

The "outcome" for Yervoy (ipilimumab) was fda approved because it improved life expectancy of advanced melanoma patients by two months.

IL-2, not much diference.

Zelboraf, not much difference.

Bio-chemotherapy, not much difference.

Bottom line is that NO treatment or clinical trial,  , past or present,  has seen a durable remission rate beyond maybe, at best, in the 15% to 20%.range of participants and that is being generous with the numbers.   In my mind, NO current treatment offers the best , consistent "outcome" for any two, four, five, fifty or hundreds of people.  The science is simply not there yet.

It is important however, that because funding and the resulting research has moved forward , there ARE more options, and in my humble opinion, the research is moving toward melanoma becoming a disease of management, but the choices and options are still too few at the expense of many lives.

But I do think we are moving forward.  Just not fast enough.

End of editorial. :)


Charlie S

Anonymous - (9/17/2012 - 8:40pm)

There are so many trials. Where does anyone even begin? And how do they chose? I am a stage II er and my oncologist wants to treat me like a stage III.

Anonymous - (9/19/2012 - 8:47pm)

But then you always hear/read that there are so many changes in melanoma treatment and the statistics are meaningless

Anonymous - (9/17/2012 - 8:28pm)


Thank you for your detailed explanation. I really appreciate your thoughts. I can now make some talking points with my Oncologist. Thanks, Phil

LynnLuc - (9/18/2012 - 1:48am)

You could also check out this trial if you are Stage 3 C

Phase I Study of Anti-PD-1 Human Monoclonal Antibody MDX-1106 and Vaccine Therapy Comprising gp100:209-217(210M) Peptide, MART-1:26-35(27L) Peptide, gp100:280-288(288V) Peptide, NY-ESO-1 Peptide, and Montanide ISA 51 VG in Patients With Resected Stage IIIC or IV Melanoma

I am stage 4 NED for 2 1/2 years so far and in this trial.

Advocate for your own treatment.. Stage 4 Melanoma NED Surgery,Radiation, Temodar 300Mg July 2009-March 2010, then "Phase I Study of Anti-PD-1 Human Monoclonal Antibody MDX-1106 and Vaccine Therapy"