Oncogenic BRAF, which drives cell transformation and proliferation, has been detected in approximately 50% of human malignant melanomas and 5% to 15% of colorectal cancers. Despite the remarkable clinical activities achieved by vemurafenib and dabrafenib in treating BRAF(V600E) metastatic melanoma, their clinical efficacy in BRAF(V600E) colorectal cancer is far less impressive. Prior studies suggested that feedback activation of EGFR and MAPK signaling upon BRAF inhibition might contribute to the relative unresponsiveness of colorectal cancer to the first-generation BRAF inhibitors. Here, we report characterization of a dual RAF kinase/EGFR inhibitor, BGB-283, which is currently under clinical investigation. In vitro, BGB-283 potently inhibits BRAF(V600E)-activated ERK phosphorylation and cell proliferation. It demonstrates selective cytotoxicity and preferentially inhibits proliferation of cancer cells harboring BRAF(V600E) and EGFR mutation/amplification. In BRAF(V600E) colorectal cancer cell lines, BGB-283 effectively inhibits the reactivation of EGFR and EGFR-mediated cell proliferation. In vivo, BGB-283 treatment leads to dose-dependent tumor growth inhibition accompanied by partial and complete tumor regressions in both cell line-derived and primary human colorectal tumor xenografts bearing BRAF(V600E) mutation. These findings support BGB-283 as a potent antitumor drug candidate with clinical potential for treating colorectal cancer harboring BRAF(V600E) mutation.
©2015 American Association for Cancer Research.