At Six Month Post-Launch, Nearly One Half of Surveyed U.S. Oncologists Have Prescribed Tafinlar for Malignant Melanoma, Compared with Just Over One Quarter Who Used Mekinist

The Highest Percentage of Non-Prescribers Anticipate Prescribing Tafinlar and Mekinist Within the Next One to Three Months, According to Findings from Decision Resources Group

March 26, 2014 – Burlington, Mass. – Decision Resources Group finds that at six months post-launch in the United States, 45 percent of surveyed U.S. medical oncologists have prescribed GlaxoSmithKline’s BRAF inhibitor Tafinlar for BRAF-mutation-positive unresectable or metastatic melanoma compared with 28 percent who have prescribed GlaxoSmithKline’s MEK inhibitor Mekinist. Among current non-prescribers of Tafinlar and Mekinist, the highest percentage (38 percent and 44 percent, respectively) expects to prescribe these agents to their BRAF-mutation-positive unresectable or metastatic melanoma patients within the next one to three months. Notably, a significantly higher percentage of medical oncologists surveyed at six months post-launch express a high willingness to prescribe Mekinist compared with at one month post-launch.

Other key findings from the LaunchTrends® Tafinlar/Mekinist report:
  • The top perceived advantage of single-agent Tafinlar and Mekinist over other currently available treatment options for unresectable and metastatic malignant melanoma is their efficacy.
  • Tafinlar’s and Mekinist’s safety and tolerability profiles and their cost are cited by surveyed oncologists as key disadvantages.
  • The majority of surveyed oncologists are aware that Tafinlar and Mekinist are approved for use in combination and 60 percent of surveyed oncologists who have prescribed Tafinlar and Mekinist as monotherapy indicate that they have prescribed Tafinlar/Mekinist combination therapy.
  • The majority of surveyed medical oncologists who have prescribed Tafinlar, Mekinist and Tafinlar/Mekinist combination therapy indicate high satisfaction with these therapies; with the mean satisfaction level being the highest for Tafinlar/Mekinist combination therapy.

Comments from Decision Resources Group Senior Business Insights Analyst Karen Pomeranz, M.Sc., Ph.D.:
  • “At six months post-launch of Tafinlar and Mekinist, surveyed medical oncologists indicated that they expect to prescribe Roche/Genentech/Daiichi Sankyo’s first-to-market BRAF-inhibitor Zelboraf to a significantly lower percentage of unresectable or metastatic BRAF V600-mutated malignant melanoma patients compared with medical oncologists surveyed one month after the launch.”
  • “According to surveyed oncologists, Tafinlar and Mekinist are most-likely to replace prescriptions of Zelboraf with use of Tafinlar/Mekinist combination therapy most-likely to replace Zelboraf in first-line BRAF-mutation-positive unresectable or metastatic malignant melanoma.” 

About BioTrends Research Group
BioTrends Research Group provides syndicated and custom primary market research to pharmaceutical manufacturers competing in clinically evolving, specialty pharmaceutical markets. For information on BioTrends publications and research capabilities, please contact us at (610) 321-9400 or www. Bio-Trends. com. BioTrends is a Decision Resources Group company.

About Decision Resources Group
Decision Resources Group is a cohesive portfolio of companies that offers best-in-class, high-value information and insights on important sectors of the healthcare industry. Clients rely on this analysis and data to make informed decisions. Please visit Decision Resources Group at


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Chris Comfort
Decision Resources Group

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