Background: Pegylated interferon α-2b (IFN α-2b) improves disease-free survival in adults with resected stage III melanoma. We conducted a study to determine the feasibility and safety of incorporating pegylated IFN α-2b as adjuvant therapy in the treatment of children and adolescents with high-risk melanoma. Pharmacokinetic studies of IFN α-2b and neuropsychological and quality of life (OL) assessments were performed. Patient and Methods: Eligible patients with resected American Joint Committee on Cancer Stage IIC, IIIA, and IIIB cutaneous melanoma received nonpegylated IFN α-2b 20 million units/m2/day intravenously 5 days per week for 4 weeks (induction) followed by pegylated IFN α-2b 1 μg/kg/dose weekly subcutaneously (SQ) for 48 weeks (maintenance). Results: Twenty-three patients (15 females, median age 10 years) were enrolled. All patients completed induction therapy; five patients did not complete maintenance therapy either because of recurrent disease (n = 2) or toxicity (n = 3). The most common grade 3 and 4 toxicities of pegylated IFN α-2b were neutropenia (35%) and elevated liver transaminases (17%). The median nonpegylated IFN α-2b AUC0-∞ (5,026 pcg⋅hr/ml) was similar to adults. The median pegylated IFN α-2b exposure (48,480 pcg⋅hr/ml) was greater than the cumulative weekly exposure for nonpegylated IFN α-2b administered SQ three times per week (TIW). Validated measures demonstrated an improvement in QOL scores and no decline in psychological functioning over the course of therapy. Conclusions: Pegylated IFN α-2b 1 μg/kg/dose SQ weekly as maintenance therapy in children and adolescents with high-risk melanoma is feasible with tolerable toxicity and appears to yield higher exposures than nonpegylated IFN α-2b administered SQ TIW.
|Number of pages||7|
|Journal||Pediatric Blood and Cancer|
|State||Published - Jul 1 2016|
Bibliographical noteFunding Information:
Cancer Center Support CORE from the National Cancer Institute; Grant number: P30 CA 21765; Grant sponsor: American Lebanese Syrian Associated Charities; Grant sponsor: Schering-Plough/Merck, Inc.
© 2016 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.
- Adjuvant therapy
- High risk
- Pegylated interferon
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Pediatrics, Perinatology, and Child Health