Keith T. Flaherty, MD
The combination of encorafenib (Braftovi) and binimetinib (Mektovi) demonstrated best-in-class overall survival (OS) and progression-free survival (PFS) in patients with BRAF
-mutant metastatic melanoma, according to data presented at the 2018 ASCO Annual Meeting.
OncLive: Please provide some background to the COLUMBUS trial.
: For several years now, we have known that BRAF
mutations are a bonafide therapeutic target in melanoma, with about 45% of patients with advanced disease harboring these mutations. We had a first wave of advances around 2010 with vemurafenib and dabrafenib (Tafinlar) coming along and essentially proving that BRAF
mutations are a good target. Those drugs ultimately became FDA approved just a couple years later. We began to understand that reactivation of the same pathway in which BRAF
resides, the MEK pathway, was a very common theme. There were available MEK inhibitors, which target the downstream pathway from BRAF
. It was immediately conceived that if we stitch these 2 drugs together, it would be useful.
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