, 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.