National report — A two-drug combination for metastatic melanoma reduced the odds of progression by 60 percent, demonstrating more effectiveness than monotherapy, according to researchers.

The study demonstrated that the BRAF-inhibitor dabrafenib and the MEK-inhibitor trametinib resulted in a median progression-free survival of 9.4 months compared to 5.8 months for patients who received only dabrafenib, MedPage Today reports. Researchers from institutions around the United States enrolled 247 patients with metastatic melanoma who had histologically confirmed metastatic melanoma with either BRAFV600E or BRAFV600K mutations, but had not received previous BRAF-inhibitor treatment.

The authors randomly assigned patients to receive 150 mg of dabrafenib twice daily plus once-daily trametinib, at a dose of either 1 mg (combination 150/1) or 2 mg (combination 150/2), or 150 mg of dabrafenib monotherapy twice daily. The combined dose of 150 mg of dabrafenib and 2 mg of trametinib led to a lower incidence of squamous cell carcinoma (7 percent) compared to monotherapy (19 percent) and a higher complete or partial response compared to monotherapy (76 versus 54 percent). Read More