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Advances in Targeting Cutaneous Melanoma

European Center for Angioscience (ECAS), Medical Faculty Mannheim, Heidelberg University, 68167 Mannheim, Germany
Division of Vascular Oncology and Metastasis, German Cancer Research Center Heidelberg (DKFZ-ZMBH Alliance), 69120 Heidelberg, Germany
Department of Dermatology, Skin Cancer Center, Ruhr-University Bochum, 44801 Bochum, Germany
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Academic Editor: Francesca Ricci
Cancers 2021, 13(9), 2090;
Received: 21 March 2021 / Revised: 16 April 2021 / Accepted: 21 April 2021 / Published: 26 April 2021
Cutaneous Melanoma (CM), arising from pigment-producing melanocytes in the skin, is an aggressive cancer with high metastatic potential. While cutaneous melanoma represents only a fraction of all skin cancers (<5%), it accounts for most skin-cancer-related deaths worldwide. Immune checkpoint inhibition has been the first therapeutic approach to significantly benefit patient survival after treatment. Nevertheless, the immunosuppressive tumor microenvironment and the intrinsic and acquired treatment resistance of melanoma remain crucial challenges. Combining local and systemic treatment offers the potential to augment therapeutic response and overcome resistance, although, complex drug combinations can harbor an increased risk of immune-related adverse events. The aim of this review is to give current insight into studies combining systemic and local therapeutic approaches to overcome drug resistance, prime melanoma cells for therapy, and improve overall treatment response in CM patients.
To date, the skin remains the most common cancer site among Caucasians in the western world. The complex, layered structure of human skin harbors a heterogenous population of specialized cells. Each cell type residing in the skin potentially gives rise to a variety of cancers, including non-melanoma skin cancer, sarcoma, and cutaneous melanoma. Cutaneous melanoma is known to exacerbate and metastasize if not detected at an early stage, with mutant melanomas tending to acquire treatment resistance over time. The intricacy of melanoma thus necessitates diverse and patient-centered targeted treatment options. In addition to classical treatment through surgical intervention and radio- or chemotherapy, several systemic and intratumoral immunomodulators, pharmacological agents (e.g., targeted therapies), and oncolytic viruses are trialed or have been recently approved. Moreover, utilizing combinations of immune checkpoint blockade with targeted, oncolytic, or anti-angiogenic approaches for patients with advanced disease progression are promising approaches currently under pre-clinical and clinical investigation. In this review, we summarize the current ‘state-of-the-art’ as well as discuss emerging agents and regimens in cutaneous melanoma treatment. View Full-Text
Keywords: skin cancer; melanoma; cancer therapy; immunotherapy; targeted therapy; intratumoral therapy; combination therapy skin cancer; melanoma; cancer therapy; immunotherapy; targeted therapy; intratumoral therapy; combination therapy
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MDPI and ACS Style

Kasakovski, D.; Skrygan, M.; Gambichler, T.; Susok, L. Advances in Targeting Cutaneous Melanoma. Cancers 2021, 13, 2090.

AMA Style

Kasakovski D, Skrygan M, Gambichler T, Susok L. Advances in Targeting Cutaneous Melanoma. Cancers. 2021; 13(9):2090.

Chicago/Turabian Style

Kasakovski, Dimitri, Marina Skrygan, Thilo Gambichler, and Laura Susok. 2021. "Advances in Targeting Cutaneous Melanoma" Cancers 13, no. 9: 2090.

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