2003 Volume 113 Issue 2 Pages 145-149
We analyzed the usefulness of serum MIA levels is Japanese melanoma patients. Serum MIA measurements were performed using an ELISA system. The cut-off was determined at 9.6 ng/ml. The mean values of serum MIAS from 73 patients at various stages were as follows, stage I, 6.5 ng/ml ; stage II, 7.8 ng/ml ; stage III, 8.2 ng/ml ; and stage IV, 32.9 ng/ml. We then analyzed a total of 200 samples taken from 31 melanoma patients (stage I, 9 ; stage II, 14 ; and stage III, 8) who had been under periodical follow-up for 12 to 77-monthpostsurgery of primary tumors. Nine of thirty-one patients had a relapse during the follow-up period. All of the serum MIA levels at the time point of the first clinical relapse in 9 patients were abnormal value. Furthermore, 8 patients showed abnormal values 4 to 53 months prior to the clinical detection of melanoma metastasis. In contrast, in 22 patients without relapse, 8 patients showed abnormal serum MIA values at least one time and 6 patients showed them repeatedly. These results show that MIA is useful in monitoring melanoma patients after the primary surgery. The repeated elevation of serum MIA levels may predict the presence of clinically undetectable occult metastases and warrant careful follow-up for relapse.