Concurrent BRAF/MEK inhibitors in BRAF V600-Mutant high-grade primary brain tumors

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BRAF V600 mutations are being identified in patients with primary brain tumors more often as molecular testing becomes widely available. Targeted treatment with BRAF inhibitors has been attempted in individual cases with some responses, whereas others showed no response or developed resistance. Preclinical work suggests that gliomas could be more responsive to the concurrent use of BRAF and MEK inhibition for MAP kinase pathway suppression. This report presents 2 cases of malignant brain tumors with BRAF V600E mutations that were resistant to radiation and temozolomide, and reports on their response to targeted treatment with the BRAF and MEK inhibitors dabrafenib and trametinib. One patient with an anaplastic pleomorphic xanthoastrocytoma experienced a partial response for 14 months, demonstrated by progressive tumor shrinkage and clinical improvement; however, this was followed by clinical and radiographic progression. The patient with glioblastoma continued to have stable disease after 16 months of treatment. These cases are encouraging in a disease that urgently needs new treatments. Further work is necessary to understand response rates, duration, and survival in primary brain tumors.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)343-347
Number of pages5
JournalJNCCN Journal of the National Comprehensive Cancer Network
Issue number4
StatePublished - Apr 1 2018

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Oncology

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