FDA Approves Drug Combination for Treating Anaplastic Thyroid Cancer
May 4, 2018 — The U.S. Food and Drug Administration has approved Tafinlar® (dabrafenib) and Mekinist® (trametinib), administered together, for the treatment of anaplastic thyroid cancer (ATC) that cannot be removed by surgery or has spread to other parts of the body (metastatic), and has a type of abnormal gene, BRAF V600E (BRAF V600E mutation-positive).
“This is the first FDA-approved treatment for patients with this aggressive form of thyroid cancer, and the third cancer with this specific gene mutation that this drug combination has been approved to treat,” said Richard Pazdur, M.D., director of the FDA’s Oncology Center of Excellence and acting director of the Office of Hematology and Oncology Products in the FDA’s Center for Drug Evaluation and Research.
Anaplastic thyroid cancer accounts for about 1 to 2 percent of all thyroid cancers.
The efficacy of Tafinlar and Mekinist in treating ATC was shown in an open-label clinical trial of patients with rare cancers with the BRAF V600E mutation.