Ipilimumab: An anti-CTLA-4 antibody for metastatic melanoma

Evan J. Lipson, Charles G. Drake

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

277 Scopus citations


Ipilimumab (MDX-010, Yervoy; Bristol-Myers Squibb), a fully human monoclonal antibody against CTL antigen 4 (CTLA-4), was recently approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) for the treatment of metastatic melanoma. In both early- and late-phase trials, ipilimumab has shown consistent activity against melanoma. For example, in a randomized phase III trial that enrolled patients with previously treated metastatic disease, ipilimumab, with or without a peptide vaccine, improved overall survival: Median overall survival was 10.1 and 10.0 months in the ipilimumab and ipilimumab plus vaccine arms, respectively, versus 6.4 months in the vaccine-alone group (hazard ratio, 0.68; P ≤ 0.003). Serious(grade 3-5) immune-related adverse events occurred in10%to15%of patients. Thus, although it provides a clear survival benefit, ipilimumab administration requires careful patient monitoring and sometimes necessitates treatment with immune-suppressive therapy. Here, we review the mechanism of action, preclinical data, and multiple clinical trials that led to FDA approval of ipilimumab for metastatic melanoma.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)6958-6962
Number of pages5
JournalClinical Cancer Research
Issue number22
StatePublished - Nov 15 2011

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Oncology
  • Cancer Research


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