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GlaxoSmithKline (GSK) Two-Drug Melanoma Combo Slows Cancer in Study  
10/1/2012 7:48:17 AM

GlaxoSmithKline Plc (GSK)’s combination of two experimental melanoma medicines slowed the cancer’s progress longer than a single-drug treatment, a study found. Patients taking Glaxo’s dabrafenib and trametinib together delayed tumors from progressing for 9.4 months, compared with 5.8 months for patients taking dabrafenib alone, according to the study of 162 patients. The trial was part of the second of three phases of human testing usually required by regulators. Dabrafenib works by blocking BRAF, a mutant gene that spurs cancer-cell growth in about half of melanoma patients, while trametinib thwarts a related protein called MEK, which helps tumors resist an assault on BRAF. The study, funded by London- based Glaxo, was released today at the European Society for Medical Oncology meeting in Vienna and simultaneously published in the New England Journal of Medicine.