Definition: Ipilimumab is an antibody that activates the body's immune system to fight melanoma by inhibiting the CTLA-4 molecule. It is being tested in phase III clinical trials by itself and in combination with vaccines, other immunotherapies such as interleukin-2, and chemotherapies such as dacarbazine. Overall response rates range from 13% with ipilimumab plus vaccine in patients with stage IV disease to 17% and 22% with ipilimumab plus dacarbazine or interleukin-2, respectively, in patients with metastatic disease. Responses have been long-lasting, and among those experiencing more severe side effects, even higher response rates have been seen -- up to 36%. This makes ipilimumab one of the more promising upcoming drugs for the treatment of melanoma patients with few other options.
Also Known As: MDX-010, MDX-101, BMS-734016