, Volume 3, Issue 6, pp 558-563

Evaluation of new putative tumor markers for melanoma

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Background: The early diagnosis of recurrent melanoma can contribute to better outcome if the disease can be surgically resected or if the metastases are responsive to systemic therapies. Lipid-associated sialic acid (LASA-P) and the S-100 protein (S-100) were evaluated as tumor markers for melanoma with the goal of early detection of recurrence.

Methods: Sixty-seven patients were identified who had levels of S-100 and LASA-P drawn during their clinical course. A multivariate regression analysis was performed to determine the significance of the serum markers in relation to other prognostic factors for melanoma.

Results: After a median follow-up of 30 months, 58 patients had recurrences, and 49 patients died of disease. LASA-P elevation was not associated with the time to recurrence (p=0.2176) or survival (p=0.2507). S-100 positivity was a significant predictor of recurrence (p<0.0001) and survival (p=0.0059). The median time to recurrence for S-100-positive and S-100-negative patients was 7.6 and 33.8 months, respectively. The median survival time was 59.2 months for S-100-negative patients and 29.6 months for patients positive for S-100.

Conclusions: Serum S-100 shows significant correlations to both time to recurrence and survival and could be useful in the clinical detection of malignant melanoma.

Presented at the 47th Annual Cancer Symposium of The Society of Surgical Oncology, Houston, Texas, March 17–20, 1994.