Clinical responses to vemurafenib in patients with metastatic papillary thyroid cancer harboring BRAF(V600E) mutation

Thyroid. 2013 Oct;23(10):1277-83. doi: 10.1089/thy.2013.0057. Epub 2013 Jul 17.

Abstract

Background: Clinical benefit from cytotoxic chemotherapy for metastatic papillary thyroid carcinoma (PTC) is disappointing, and effective therapeutic approaches for these patients are urgently needed. Because kinase-activating mutations in the BRAF proto-oncogene commonly occur in advanced PTC, and inhibition of BRAF(V600E) has shown promising clinical activity in melanoma, BRAF inhibitor therapy may be an effective strategy to treat metastatic PTC.

Methods: The dose escalation portion of a first-in-human, phase I study of vemurafenib, a selective RAF inhibitor, included three patients with metastatic PTC harboring the BRAF(V600E) mutation. Vemurafenib was initially dosed at 240-360 mg twice a day, later escalated to 720 mg twice a day. Response evaluation was performed every 8 weeks per Response Evaluation Criteria in Solid Tumors (RECIST).

Results: Among the three patients, one had a confirmed partial response with reduction of pulmonary target lesions by 31%, and the duration of response was 7.6 months before the disease progressed in the lungs and the bones. The time to progression was 11.7 months. The other two patients had stable disease, and the time to progression was 13.2 and 11.4 months, respectively.

Conclusions: Vemurafenib appears to have a promising clinical activity in patients with metastatic PTC, and our data suggest that the BRAF(V600E) mutant kinase is a relevant target for therapy in this patient population. Further investigation of inhibitors of mutated BRAF kinase in patients with PTC in a phase II study is warranted.

Trial registration: ClinicalTrials.gov NCT00215605.

Publication types

  • Clinical Trial, Phase I
  • Multicenter Study
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Amino Acid Substitution
  • Antineoplastic Agents / administration & dosage
  • Antineoplastic Agents / adverse effects
  • Antineoplastic Agents / therapeutic use*
  • Cancer Care Facilities
  • Carcinoma / drug therapy
  • Carcinoma / genetics
  • Carcinoma / metabolism
  • Carcinoma / pathology
  • Carcinoma, Papillary / drug therapy*
  • Carcinoma, Papillary / genetics
  • Carcinoma, Papillary / pathology
  • Carcinoma, Papillary / secondary
  • Cohort Studies
  • Dose-Response Relationship, Drug
  • Drug Resistance, Neoplasm
  • Female
  • Follow-Up Studies
  • Humans
  • Indoles / administration & dosage
  • Indoles / adverse effects
  • Indoles / therapeutic use*
  • Lung Neoplasms / drug therapy
  • Lung Neoplasms / genetics
  • Lung Neoplasms / pathology
  • Lung Neoplasms / secondary
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Molecular Targeted Therapy / adverse effects
  • Mutation*
  • Protein Kinase Inhibitors / administration & dosage
  • Protein Kinase Inhibitors / therapeutic use*
  • Proto-Oncogene Proteins B-raf / antagonists & inhibitors*
  • Proto-Oncogene Proteins B-raf / genetics
  • Proto-Oncogene Proteins B-raf / metabolism
  • Sulfonamides / administration & dosage
  • Sulfonamides / adverse effects
  • Sulfonamides / therapeutic use*
  • Survival Analysis
  • Thyroid Cancer, Papillary
  • Thyroid Neoplasms / drug therapy*
  • Thyroid Neoplasms / genetics
  • Thyroid Neoplasms / metabolism
  • Thyroid Neoplasms / pathology
  • Tumor Burden / drug effects
  • Vemurafenib

Substances

  • Antineoplastic Agents
  • Indoles
  • Protein Kinase Inhibitors
  • Sulfonamides
  • Vemurafenib
  • BRAF protein, human
  • Proto-Oncogene Proteins B-raf

Associated data

  • ClinicalTrials.gov/NCT00215605