Background: Patients with metastatic melanoma to the liver (MML) have a median survival of 4 to 6 months. This study evaluated patients who underwent liver resection with intent to receive postoperative tumor-infiltrating lymphocyte (TIL) therapy.
Methods: Retrospective analysis of a prospective database identified patients with MML who underwent liver resection from 1980 to 2008.
Results: A total of 539 patients had MML, and 39% (204 of 539) had tumor collected for TIL. A total of 17% (35 of 204) underwent liver resection for TIL. The 3-year overall survival was 53%. Lack of extrahepatic disease (P = .026), negative margin (P = .056), and single hepatic metastasis (P = .04) predicted survival after univariate analysis. Only lack of extrahepatic disease remained a significant predictor of survival after multivariate analysis (P = .043). A total of 31% (11 of 35) underwent complete resection without TIL, and 69% (24 of 35) underwent resection with synchronous intrahepatic and extrahepatic disease with intent to receive TIL. For 9 of 11 patients (2 of 11 excluded for gene therapy), 3-year survival was 80%. A total of 4 (44%) of 9 experienced recurrence, with a median disease-free survival of 1.2 years. For 24 patients (69%) with residual disease, 3-year survival was 51% (2 of 24 excluded for gene therapy). A total of 63% (15 of 24) received postoperative TIL (3-year survival 65%), and 29% (7 of 24) did not. A total of 40% (6 of 15) had disease that partially responded to TIL; the disease of 67% (4 of 6) had not progressed at median follow-up of 55 months (range, 42-197+ months). The seven patients who did not receive TIL had a median survival of 4.6 months.
Conclusions: Resection of MML with TIL should be considered because it can result in prolonged survival in a highly selected group of patients.