Purpose: We investigated the use of graded-dose peginterferon a-2b (Peg-IFN) in patients with stage IV melanoma overexpressing basic fibroblast growth factor (FGF-2). The primary objective was suppression of plasma FGF-2 to within reference range (<7.5 pg/mL). Experimental Design: Plasma FGF-2 was measured at baseline (step 1), and patients with concentrations of 15 pg/mL or more were eligible for study treatment (step 2). Peg-IFN was given weekly at a starting dose of 0.5 μg/kg/wk with increment every 3 weeks based on serial FGF-2 concentrations. Results: Two hundred seven patients entered step 1;45 (22%) overexpressed FGF-2 (median - 22 pg/dL). Twenty-nine eligible patients entered step 2 and received treatment. Patients' median age was 64 years (range, 29-84 years). Most had more than two prior therapies. FGF-2 decreased in 28 (97%) patients, with suppression to reference range in 10 (35%). Median time to FGF-2 suppression was 30 days. The best clinical responses were partial response (7%) and stable disease (17%). Median progression-free survival (PFS) and overall survival (OS) were 2.0 and 9.7 months, respectively. Patients who achieved FGF-2 suppression were more likely than those who did not to have a response or stable disease (P - 0.03). VEGF concentrations decreased in 27 patients (93%) during treatment and paralleled those of FGF-2 over time. We found no compensatory increase in VEGF among those with FGF-2 suppression. Conclusions: Graded-dose Peg-IFN suppresses FGF-2 in patients with metastatic melanoma who overexpress FGF-2. Over one third of patients had complete suppression of plasma FGF-2, which correlated with clinical response to this therapy.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Cancer Research