SkylineDx presents new data showing that their Merlin Test was able to prospectively reduce >37% of surgeries in a non-interventional study for newly diagnosed melanoma patients2. The Merlin Test identifies melanoma patients that have a low risk for nodal metastasis and therefore can safely forgo a sentinel lymph node biopsy (SLNB) surgery. This is an invasive surgical procedure used to determine metastatic spread of the cancer for staging purposes. In approximately 80% of the surgeries, the biopsy comes back negative for metastasis and does not further impact the patient pathway. The Merlin Test provides a more personalized insight on the metastatic propensity of the tumor, patients with a low-risk tumor could avoid the surgery3.
Four melanoma medical centers from the Netherlands led this prospective multicenter innovative study which is currently still ongoing. The study was initiated during the first wave of COVID-19 pandemic to allow for surgical triage on SLNB and to evaluate the implementation of Merlin Test in clinical practice. Results of this prospective trial confirm the performance of previously published European and US retrospective validation studies, in real world practice2. The abstract publication is a designated oral presentation during the 18th Congres of the European Association of Dermato-oncology (EADO) in Sevilla, Spain (April 21st-23rd 2022).