The gist: A new test helps measure the risk of metastasis for early-stage melanoma patients. The test, called DecisionDx-Melanoma, is a molecular test that measures the activity of 28 genes. Based on the results of the test for a given patient, a doctor may make certain treatment suggestions for that patient.
“Because two-thirds of melanoma patients who die or experience metastatic disease are initially diagnosed with early-stage disease, it is important to determine risk for metastasis in patients with early-stage melanoma. About 75% of patients with melanoma have early disease (stage I or II) at diagnosis.
“A prognostic 28-gene signature (DecisionDx-Melanoma, Castle Biosciences) could predict which patients with stage I or II melanoma are at high risk for metastasis, and could alter the clinical management of these patients, according to a confirmatory study published in the January 1 issue of Clinical Cancer Research.
“The 28-gene signature predicts a patient’s risk for metastasis, independent of American Joint Committee on Cancer (AJCC) melanoma staging, Breslow thickness, ulceration, mitotic rate, and age.”