Melanoma Diagnostics

Investigators in the Melanoma Research Program are exploring options to improve melanoma diagnostics through imaging interpretation for certain patients on immunotherapy.

In particular, researchers are studying a specially labeled interleukin-2 that could aid in tumor measurement diagnostics for melanoma patients.

Although new immunotherapy agents have changed the landscape of metastatic melanoma treatment in recent years, challenges remain in accurately determining true radiologic progression from inflammatory pseudoprogression in some melanoma patients. Melanoma research underway at Mayo Clinic suggests that interleukin-2 imaging may help improve imaging interpretation for patients on immunotherapy.

Many patients undergo immunotherapy as part of their treatment for metastatic melanoma. Unfortunately, many modern imaging methods used to assess response may lead to inaccurate results, possibly causing patients who are thought to have early tumor progression to unnecessarily and prematurely withdraw from what could actually be a viable treatment.

Led by Svetomir N. Markovic, M.D., Ph.D., researchers at Mayo Clinic and their collaborators are exploring the utility of using a specially labeled interleukin-2 to better visualize and differentiate tumors that are truly progressing from tumors that are increasing in size because of lymphocyte infiltration in patients undergoing systemic immunotherapy for metastatic melanoma.

If you're interested in finding or participating in an interleukin-2 trial for melanoma, contact us or complete the online Cancer Studies Contact form.