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September 1987

Reduction of Enucleation-Induced Metastasis in Intraocular Melanoma by Periorbital Irradiation

Author Affiliations

From the Department of Ophthalmology (Drs Sanborn and Niederkorn) and the Division of Radiation Oncology (Dr Nguyen), University of Texas Health Science Center at Dallas; and the Department of Ophthalmology, University of Louisville, Louisville, Ky (Dr Gamel).

Arch Ophthalmol. 1987;105(9):1260-1264. doi:10.1001/archopht.1987.01060090118040

• The optimum treatment of malignant choroidal melanoma remains controversial. Some authors have hypothesized that enucleation promotes metastatic disease. This hypothesis has been demonstrated in the B16F10 melanoma mouse model. The present study used this model to examine the effect of external beam irradiation as a means of reducing metastases induced by enucleation. The results show a dose-dependent reduction in the DNA synthesis of irradiated melanoma cells. Administration of 800 cGy (800 rad) of radiation produced a 90% reduction in DNA synthesis; however, higher levels of radiation failed to produce further depression of cell proliferation. Irradiation of melanoma cells before intravenous injection resulted in a significant dose-dependent reduction in the number of lung metastases. While there was no effect with 100 cGy (100 rad) of radiation, 1000 cGy (1000 rad) produced a 95% reduction in metastases. In the animal model of enucleation-induced metastasis, 2000 cGy (2000 rad) delivered to the orbit either before or after enucleation produced a significant reduction in the number of lung tumors, compared with animals that did not undergo irradiation; 1000 cGy (1000 rad) delivered before enucleation did not have such an effect. These studies provide evidence that periorbital external beam irradiation is useful in reducing metastases following enucleation of a malignant melanoma in this animal model.

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