Metastatic melanoma is a highly aggressive malignancy that has traditionally been very difficult to treat. However, after decades of basic research into the signal transduction pathways that promote cancer cell survival, chemoresistance, growth, and crosstalk with the immune system, targeted therapies have now been developed that offer improved survival for patients with metastatic melanoma. Some of the most promising therapies that have been developed include ipilimumab, an anti-cytotoxic T lymphocyte antigen 4 antibody that enhances T-cell activity in the tumour, and selective BRAF inhibitors, such as vemurafenib that blocks tumour cell proliferation in patients with activating BRAF mutations. Although these treatments offer substantial hope for patients, they are not without their drawbacks, which include adverse side-effects, drug resistance, and eventual relapse. Nanotherapeutics holds significant promise to circumvent these shortcomings and has the additional advantage of potentially functioning as a diagnostic device. We will discuss the scope of the use of such multimodal nanoparticles for melanoma treatment and ask whether such particles can offer patients with metastatic melanoma improved prognoses for the future.
- Drug delivery systems