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Selumetinib plus dacarbazine versus placebo plus dacarbazine as first-line treatment for BRAF-mutant metastatic melanoma: a phase 2 double-blind randomised study

Dr Caroline Robert MD, Prof Reinhard Dummer MD, Prof Ralf Gutzmer MD, Paul Lorigan MB, Kevin B Kim MD, Marta Nyakas MD, Ana Arance MD, Prof Gabriella Liszkay MD, Prof Dirk Schadendorf MD, Mireille Cantarini MBChB, Stuart Spencer MSc, Prof Mark R Middleton

The Lancet Oncology

Findings

Between July 20, 2009, and April 8, 2010, 91 patients were randomly assigned to receive dacarbazine in combination with selumetinib (n=45) or placebo (n=46). Overall survival did not differ significantly between groups (median 13·9 months, 80% CI 10·2–15·6, in the selumetinib plus dacarbazine group and 10·5 months, 9·6–14·7, in the placebo plus dacarbazine group; hazard ratio [HR] 0·93, 80% CI 0·67–1·28, one-sided p=0·39). However, progression-free survival was significantly improved in the selumetinib plus dacarbazine group versus the placebo plus dacarbazine group (HR 0·63, 80% CI 0·47–0·84, one-sided p=0·021), with a median of 5·6 months (80% CI 4·9–5·9) versus 3·0 months (2·8–4·6), respectively. The most frequent adverse events included nausea (28 [64%] of 44 patients on selumetinib vs 25 [56%] of 45 on placebo), acneiform dermatitis (23 [52%] vs one [2%]), diarrhoea (21 [48%] vs 13 [29%]), vomiting (21 [48%] vs 15 [33%]), and peripheral oedema (19 [43%] vs three [7%]). The most common grade 3–4 adverse event was neutropenia (six [14%] patients in the selumetinib plus dacarbazine group vs four [9%] in the placebo plus dacarbazine group).