Melanoma chemoprevention: a role for statins or fibrates?

Am J Ther. May-Jun 2003;10(3):203-10. doi: 10.1097/00045391-200305000-00007.


Although numerous second-generation isoprenylation inhibitors are proposed or under investigation for the treatment and/or prevention of cancer (eg, R115777, SCH 66336, L-778,123, BMS-214662), the chemotherapeutic and chemopreventive potential of commonly prescribed first-generation isoprenylation inhibitors, the statins, and other classes of lipid-lowering medications, the fibrates, has yet to be seriously explored. Two lipid-lowering medications, lovastatin and gemfibrozil, have been associated with a decreased incidence of melanoma in large, prospective, randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled clinical cardiology trials. This article reviews melanoma biology and the clinical evidence for the use of lipid-lowering medications for melanoma chemoprevention and/or adjuvant chemotherapy.

Publication types

  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, P.H.S.
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Anticarcinogenic Agents / therapeutic use*
  • Anticholesteremic Agents / therapeutic use
  • Antineoplastic Agents / therapeutic use
  • Chemoprevention / methods
  • Gemfibrozil / therapeutic use*
  • Humans
  • Lovastatin / therapeutic use*
  • Melanoma / drug therapy*
  • Melanoma / prevention & control*
  • Meta-Analysis as Topic
  • Prospective Studies
  • Randomized Controlled Trials as Topic


  • Anticarcinogenic Agents
  • Anticholesteremic Agents
  • Antineoplastic Agents
  • Lovastatin
  • Gemfibrozil