The potential role of sunitinib targeting melanomas.

Expert opinion on investigational drugs

PubMedID: 24050392

Valsecchi ME, Sato T. The potential role of sunitinib targeting melanomas. Expert Opin Investig Drugs. 2013;.
Introduction: Metastatic melanoma - independently of its cutaneous, uveal or mucosal origin - represents an exceptionally aggressive tumor with poor prognosis. Molecular and genetics investigations permitted to identify several important driver mutations: BRAF, NRAS, c-Kit, GNA11 and GNAQ. Additionally, hypervascular and immunlogenic characteristics of metastatic melanoma make in this tumor a unique therapeutic target. In this regard, the antiangiogenic, antiproliferative and immunomodulator properties of sunitinib make it an attractive drug to explore in melanoma. Areas covered: In this article, the currently available data on sunitinib in terms of its pharmacokinetics and mechanisms of action is summarized. The reader will also be updated on current clinical experience using this drug in the treatment of cutaneous, mucosal and uveal melanomas. Special attention is placed on the scientific rationales behind its development in melanoma including the potentiality to broadly attack receptor-tyrosine kinases as well as its remarkable but certainly still unexplored immunomodulatory qualities. Expert opinion: Given its wide spectrum of actions and the encouraging results obtained from the limited clinical experience, sunitinib remains as a promising drug, especially for mucosal and uveal melanoma, that deserves further exploration in properly designed clinical trials.