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Permanent URL to this publication: http://dx.doi.org/10.5167/uzh-41538

Hassel, J C; Sucker, A; Edler, L; Kurzen, H; Moll, I; Stresemann, C; Spieth, K; Mauch, C; Rass, K; Dummer, R; Schadendorf, D (2010). MGMT gene promoter methylation correlates with tolerance of temozolomide treatment in melanoma but not with clinical outcome. British Journal of Cancer, 103(6):820-826.

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BACKGROUND: Despite limited clinical efficacy, treatment with dacarbazine or temozolomide (TMZ) remains the standard therapy for metastatic melanoma. In glioblastoma, promoter methylation of the counteracting DNA repair enzyme O(6)-methylguanine-DNA-methyltransferase (MGMT) correlates with survival of patients exposed to TMZ in combination with radiotherapy. For melanoma, data are limited and controversial.

METHODS: Biopsy samples from 122 patients with metastatic melanoma being treated with TMZ in two multicenter studies of the Dermatologic Cooperative Oncology Group were investigated for MGMT promoter methylation. We used the COBRA (combined bisulphite restriction analysis) technique to determine aberrant methylation of CpG islands in small amounts of genomic DNA isolated from paraffin-embedded tissue sections. To detect aberrant methylation, bisulphite-treated DNA was amplified by PCR, enzyme restricted, and visualised by gel electrophoresis.

RESULTS: Correlation with clinical data from 117 evaluable patients in a best-response evaluation indicated no statistically significant association between MGMT promoter methylation status and response. A methylated MGMT promoter was observed in 34.8% of responders and 23.4% of non-responders (P=0.29). In addition, no survival advantage for patients with a methylated MGMT promoter was detectable (P=0.79). Interestingly, we found a significant correlation between MGMT methylation and tolerance of therapy. Patients with a methylated MGMT promoter had more severe adverse events, requiring more TMZ dose reductions or discontinuations (P=0.007; OR 2.7 (95% CI: 1.32-5.7)). Analysis of MGMT promoter methylation comparing primaries and different metastases over the clinical course revealed no statistical difference (P=0.49).

CONCLUSIONS: In advanced melanoma MGMT promoter, methylation correlates with tolerance of therapy, but not with clinical outcome.


23 citations in Web of Science®
22 citations in Scopus®
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Additional indexing

Item Type:Journal Article, refereed, original work
Communities & Collections:04 Faculty of Medicine > University Hospital Zurich > Dermatology Clinic
Dewey Decimal Classification:610 Medicine & health
Deposited On:09 Jan 2011 15:56
Last Modified:05 Apr 2016 14:32
Publisher:Nature Publishing Group
Publisher DOI:10.1038/sj.bjc.6605796
PubMed ID:20736948

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