Dabrafenib plus trametinib in patients with BRAF V600E-mutant anaplastic thyroid cancer: updated analysis from the phase II ROAR basket study

Ann Oncol. 2022 Apr;33(4):406-415. doi: 10.1016/j.annonc.2021.12.014. Epub 2022 Jan 10.


Background: Combined therapy with dabrafenib plus trametinib was approved in several countries for treatment of BRAF V600E-mutant anaplastic thyroid cancer (ATC) based on an earlier interim analysis of 23 response-assessable patients in the ATC cohort of the phase II Rare Oncology Agnostic Research (ROAR) basket study. We report an updated analysis describing the efficacy and safety of dabrafenib plus trametinib in the full ROAR ATC cohort of 36 patients with ∼4 years of additional study follow-up.

Patients and methods: ROAR (NCT02034110) is an open-label, nonrandomized, phase II basket study evaluating dabrafenib plus trametinib in BRAF V600E-mutant rare cancers. The ATC cohort comprised 36 patients with unresectable or metastatic ATC who received dabrafenib 150 mg twice daily plus trametinib 2 mg once daily orally until disease progression, unacceptable toxicity, or death. The primary endpoint was investigator-assessed overall response rate (ORR) per Response Evaluation Criteria in Solid Tumors version 1.1. Secondary endpoints were duration of response (DOR), progression-free survival (PFS), overall survival (OS), and safety.

Results: At data cutoff (14 September 2020), median follow-up was 11.1 months (range, 0.9-76.6 months). The investigator-assessed ORR was 56% (95% confidence interval, 38.1% to 72.1%), including three complete responses; the 12-month DOR rate was 50%. Median PFS and OS were 6.7 and 14.5 months, respectively. The respective 12-month PFS and OS rates were 43.2% and 51.7%, and the 24-month OS rate was 31.5%. No new safety signals were identified with additional follow-up, and adverse events were consistent with the established tolerability of dabrafenib plus trametinib.

Conclusions: These updated results confirm the substantial clinical benefit and manageable toxicity of dabrafenib plus trametinib in BRAF V600E-mutant ATC. Dabrafenib plus trametinib notably improved long-term survival and represents a meaningful treatment option for this rare, aggressive cancer.

Keywords: BRAF; anaplastic thyroid cancer; dabrafenib; targeted therapy; trametinib.

Publication types

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

MeSH terms

  • Antineoplastic Combined Chemotherapy Protocols* / adverse effects
  • Humans
  • Imidazoles / therapeutic use
  • Mutation
  • Oximes / therapeutic use
  • Proto-Oncogene Proteins B-raf / genetics
  • Pyridones / therapeutic use
  • Pyrimidinones / therapeutic use
  • Thyroid Carcinoma, Anaplastic* / drug therapy
  • Thyroid Carcinoma, Anaplastic* / genetics
  • Thyroid Neoplasms* / drug therapy
  • Thyroid Neoplasms* / genetics


  • Imidazoles
  • Oximes
  • Pyridones
  • Pyrimidinones
  • trametinib
  • BRAF protein, human
  • Proto-Oncogene Proteins B-raf
  • dabrafenib