Systematic literature review of efficacy, safety and tolerability outcomes of chemotherapy regimens in patients with metastatic Merkel cell carcinoma.

Nghiem P, Kaufman HL, Bharmal M, Mahnke L, Phatak H, Becker JC.

Future Oncol. 2017 Jun;13(14):1263-1279.

PMID: 28350180

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Merkel cell carcinoma (MCC) is a rare neuroendocrine, cutaneous malignancy with poor prognosis once metastasized. The aim of this study was to conduct a systematic literature review to assess clinical outcomes associated with chemotherapy regimens in metastatic MCC.


Embase®, MEDLINE®, MEDLINE®-In-Process and CENTRAL were searched for studies published in January 2016.


Overall, the literature on chemotherapy in patients with metastatic MCC is sparse, with most studies being case series/reports. Across all studies, response rates ranged from 20 to 61%, with higher response rates in first-line setting (53-61%) versus second-line setting (23-45%). Among responders, duration of response was short (≤8 months) in both first- and second-line settings. There is a need for novel agents that can induce durable responses in metastatic MCC.

Future Oncol. 2017 Jun;13(14):1263-1279.