Differential Outcomes in Codon 12/13 and Codon 61 NRAS-Mutated Cancers in the Phase II NCI-MATCH Trial of Binimetinib in Patients with NRAS-Mutated Tumors

Clin Cancer Res. 2021 Jun 1;27(11):2996-3004. doi: 10.1158/1078-0432.CCR-21-0066. Epub 2021 Feb 26.


Purpose: Preclinical and clinical data suggest that downstream inhibition with an MEK inhibitor, such as binimetinib, might be efficacious for NRAS-mutated cancers.

Patients and methods: Patients enrolled in the NCI-MATCH trial master protocol underwent tumor biopsy and molecular profiling by targeted next-generation sequencing. Patients with NRAS-mutated tumors, except melanoma, were enrolled in subprotocol Z1A, a single-arm study evaluating binimetinib 45 mg twice daily. The primary endpoint was objective response rate (ORR). Secondary endpoints included progression-free survival (PFS) and overall survival (OS). A post hoc analysis examined the association of NRAS mutation type with outcome.

Results: In total, 47 eligible patients with a refractory solid tumor harboring a codon 12, 13, or 61 NRAS mutation were treated. Observed toxicity was moderate, and 30% of patients discontinued treatment because of binimetinib-associated toxicity. The ORR was 2.1% (1/47 patients). A patient with malignant ameloblastoma harboring a codon 61 NRAS mutation achieved a durable partial response (PR). A patient with NRAS codon 61-mutated colorectal cancer had an unconfirmed PR, and two other patients with NRAS codon 61-mutated colorectal had stable disease for at least 12 months. In an exploratory analysis, patients with colorectal cancer bearing a NRAS codon 61 mutation (n = 8) had a significantly longer OS (P = 0.03) and PFS (P = 0.007) than those with codon 12 or 13 mutations (n = 16).

Conclusions: Single-agent binimetinib did not show promising efficacy in NRAS-mutated cancers. The observation of increased OS and PFS in patients with codon 61 NRAS-mutated colorectal cancer merits further investigation.

Publication types

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

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Aged, 80 and over
  • Ameloblastoma / drug therapy*
  • Ameloblastoma / genetics*
  • Benzimidazoles / therapeutic use*
  • Codon / genetics*
  • Colorectal Neoplasms / drug therapy*
  • Colorectal Neoplasms / genetics*
  • Female
  • GTP Phosphohydrolases / genetics*
  • Humans
  • Jaw Neoplasms / drug therapy*
  • Jaw Neoplasms / genetics*
  • Male
  • Membrane Proteins / genetics*
  • Middle Aged
  • Mutation*
  • Treatment Outcome


  • Benzimidazoles
  • Codon
  • Membrane Proteins
  • binimetinib
  • GTP Phosphohydrolases
  • NRAS protein, human