Actinomycin‐D, levamisole chemoimmunotherapy of refractory malignant melanoma

Stephen W. Hall, Robert S. Benjamin*, Uri Lewinski, Giora Mavligit

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Sixty adult patients with disseminated melanoma refractory to DTIC or Dacarbazine were given chemoimmunotherapy with intermittent high single dose Actinomycin‐D and Levamisole. Actinomycin‐D was given at a dose of 1.5‐2.0 mg/m2 intravenously every 3 to 4 weeks. Levamisole was given in a dose of 150 mg/day for two consecutive days each week (50 patients) and in a dose of 200 mg every other day (10 patients). Antitumor responses consisted of 2% complete remissions (CR), 2% partial remissions (PR), and 33% disease improvement less than PR or stabilization (S). Comparison of these patients who received Actinomycin‐D + Levamisole with those on an immediately preceding study in a similar population where Actinomycin‐D was given as a single agent revealed no difference in response rates. Patients who responded to Actinomycin‐D + Levamisole (CR + PR + S) survived significantly longer (35 weeks) than nonresponders (12 weeks, p < 0.01). Survival was not longer (p <.05) in responding patients (CR + PR + S) receiving Actinomycin‐D + Levamisole (35 weeks) compared to those responding to Actinomycin‐D alone (18 weeks, p = 0.09). Hematologic toxicity was tolerable with median lowest granulocyte counts of 1.6 × 103/μ1 and platelet counts of 134,000/μ1. Other toxic effects were predominantly nausea, vomiting, and mucositis. In those patients who received alternate day Levamisole there was greater gastrointestinal upset as well as fever, rash and central nervous system toxicity which was unacceptable.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1195-1200
Number of pages6
Issue number4
StatePublished - Apr 1979
Externally publishedYes


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