Following extensive phase trials of the combination of dacarbazine and interferon-α2a we performed a prospective, randomized, controlled trial of this combination versus dacarbazine alone as systemic therapy for symptomatic, measurable metastatic malignant melanoma. The two treatment arms were well matched for age, sex, performance, status, relapse-free survival, prior therapy and sites of disease. Therapy consisted of dacarbazine given in combination in escalating doses of 200 mg/m2, 400 mg/m2 and 800 nmg/m2 i.v. every 3 weeks, or alone at 800 mg/m2 i.v. every 3 weeks. Interferon was administered subcutaneously starting at 3 mU daily on days 1-3, 9 mU daily on days 4-70, then 9 mU three times per week. Therapy was continued for at least 6 months unless overt progressive disease was obsedrved. Eighty seven patients were randomized to the combination and 83 patients to dacarbazine alone. Response rates were respectively, complete 7% and 2%, and partial 14% and 15%, for a total response rate of 21% (95% confidence limits 13-3%) and 17% (95% confidence limits 10-27%). Median duration of response was 258 and 286 days, and survival of the whole groups 229 and 269 days respectively. Toxicity was worse in the combination arm, with more patients experiencing fatigue, nausea and anorexia, flu-like symptoms and neutropenia. However quality of life was not significantly different in either group, except that fatigue, as measured at week 12 by LASA scales, and activity, as measured by the functional living index, were both improved in the combination. We conclude from this study, which is the largest reported randomized trial to date, that the combination is not superior to single agent therapy.
|Number of pages||6|
|Publication status||Published - 1993|
- Metastatic melanoma