18. Mektovi/Braftovi

mektovi
(Array BioPharma)

Active ingredient: binimetinib/encorafenib 
Disease: BRAF-mutated melanoma 
Peak sales estimate: n/a 
Approved: June 27 
Company: Array BioPharma 

The scoop: Array BioPharma had to pull the NDA for binimetinib in March 2017 after it failed as a solo therapy for NRAS-mutant melanoma. But the MEK inhibitor turned out to be a winner in combination with BRAF inhibitor encorafenib. The combination nearly doubled survival compared to Roche’s Zelboraf in a pivotal trial of melanoma with BRAF mutations. The FDA approved the Mektovi/Braftovi combination for the treatment of patients with melanoma that can't be surgically removed or has spread through the body, provided the tumors have BRAF V600E or V600K mutations. The treatment is competing with combos from pharma heavyweights Novartis and Roche, but Array CEO Ron Squarer thinks the company’s small size will give it a leg up. "As a smaller company, we are excited about working to make the patient experience as good as possible," he said, adding that there's a "very concentrated group of prescribers," so the small biotech will be able to cover the ground with a small field force. — Amirah Al Idrus

18. Mektovi/Braftovi
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