Last updated on February 2018

Uptake and Biodistribution of 89Zirconium-labeled Ipilimumab in Ipilimumab Treated Patients With Metastatic Melanoma

Brief description of study


Ipilimumab, a monoclonal antibody targeting CTLA-4, is approved for the treatment of metastatic melanoma and significantly increases median overall survival. However, use of this drug is associated with immune related adverse events (IRAEs) like colitis, hepatitis, dermatitis, alveolitis and hypophysitis in 10-40% of the patients. In general IRAEs are manageable by cessation of ipilimumab in combination with treatment with corticosteroids or TNF-alpha blockade but they can be severe or even life-threatening. In addition, treatment with ipilimumab is expensive. Because of the high costs and the potential serious toxicity of ipilimumab, it is of great importance to identify biomarkers that correlate with clinical activity and can be used to select patients that will benefit from CTLA-4 blockade therapy.

The investigators hypothesize that differences in response to treatment with ipilimumab are due to variability in the pharmacodynamics and -kinetics of the antibody. It is hypothesized that patients who do not respond to treatment with ipilimumab have lower drug levels in tumor tissues as compared to patients with a good response to therapy. In addition, the investigators hypothesize that IRAEs are associated with high drug levels in the affected tissue.

To visualize molecular interactions a novel technique is used in which positron emission tomography (PET) is combined with labeled monoclonal antibodies. Because ipilimumab induces activation of T-lymphocytes it is hypothesized that uptake of 89Zr-ipilimumab in tumor lesions and normal tissue is different (i.e. higher) after the second administration of ipilimumab (3 weeks after first injection). Therefore immuno-PET scans will be performed after the first and after the second injection of ipilimumab.


Part one: The primary objective is:

  1. To assess uptake (visual and quantitative) of 89Zr-ipilimumab in tumor lesions and biodistribution at two timepoints (at start of ipilimumab therapy and after the second injection 3 weeks later).

The secondary objectives are:

  1. To determine the correlation between tumor targeting of ipilimumab and response to therapy.
  2. To assess uptake (visual and quantitative) of 89Zr-ipilimumab in normal tissues.
  3. To determine de correlation between organ targeting and toxicity

Detailed Study Description

see above

Clinical Study Identifier: NCT03313323

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Alfonsus MJ van den Eertwegh, ...

VU Medical Center
Amsterdam, Netherlands
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