NEW YORK — Ryan J. Sullivan, MD, from the Massachusetts General Hospital Cancer Center, discussed how data from The Cancer Genome Atlas has redefined molecular subsets of melanoma at HemOnc Today Melanoma and Cutaneous Malignancies.
There are now four molecular subsets of cutaneous melanoma, including those driven by BRAF, NRAS and NF1, or which are triple-negative wild-type.
In terms of treating these subtypes, targeting mitogen-activated protein kinases has shown promise in NRAS–mutant melanoma, and is predicted to provide benefit in the emerging NF1 subset. Responses also have been seen with imatinib (Gleevec, Novartis) in 20% to 30% of patients with melanoma who harbor CKIT aberrations.
Although there are many targets in uveal melanoma, there have not yet been any breakthroughs treating this disease, Sullivan said.
“The same is true for BRAF–mutant, and BRAF–wild-type melanoma: Combinatorial regimens are being built or are the standard and need to continue to be looked at. I think this is the best way that we have to truly redefine the way we treat BRAF–wild-type patients,” Sullivan said.