The incidence of melanoma is rising globally and mortality is increasing faster than most
other cancers. Recent advances in the molecular biology of melanoma have uncovered several
potential therapeutic targets in melanoma. It has been observed that 81% of melanomas arising
from non-chronic sun-damaged skin have an oncogenic BRAF or NRAS mutation, whereas such
mutations are far less frequent in chronic sun-damaged skin melanomas, acral melanomas, or
mucosal melanomas. In contrast, c-Kit mutations are more common in mucosal and acral
melanomas, which can also be accompanied by an increase in c-Kit copy numbers.
Asian populations, the most common melanoma subtypes are acral and mucosal melanoma, which
comprise greater than 70% of all melanomas, a rate that is much higher than that seen in
white populations (6% to 7%). KIT mutations or amplification are reported about 20% in acral
or mucosal melanomas (JAMA. 2011;305(22):2327-2334). Therefore, c-Kit mutations are likely
the most common kind of genetic mutations in Asians, and the investigation of c-Kit
inhibitors is a high priority in this population.
Imatinib mesylate (Gleevec, formerly STI571; Novartis Pharmaceuticals, Basel, Switzerland),
is a selective inhibitor, targeting Abl as well as c-Kit and the platelet-derived growth
factor receptor. Imatinib demonstrated significant activity in patients with metastatic
melanoma harboring genetic c-Kit aberrations, with an overall response rate of 29% (J Clin
Oncol 2011;29:2904-9) Regorafenib (BAY 73-4506) is a novel, orally active, diphenylurea
multikinase inhibitor of VEGFR1-3, c-KIT, TIE-2, PDGFR-β, FGFR-1, RET, RAF-1, BRAF and p38
MAP kinase. Regorafenib provide a significant improved PFS and OS in patients with GIST and
colorectal cancer, respectively (Lancet 2013; 381: 295-302, Lancet 2013; 381: 303-12).
Especially, inhibitory activity of regorafenib is most effective in c-kit mutated tumors.
Therefore, regorafenib has a chance to significant activity in melanoma with c-kit mutations.
However, no clinical trials have been published for regorafenib in the patients with melanoma
who harbor c-Kit mutations.
NCCN recommend ipilimumab, high-dose interleukin-2, and vemurafenib or dabrafenib for BRAF
mutated tumor as a preferred regimen, and imatinib for c-kit mutated tumors, dacarbazine,
temozolomide, and paclitaxel as other active regimens. In Korea, ipilimumab is not available
yet and imatinib for c-kit mutated tumors is not used legally. Thus, regorafenib could be
used for c-kit mutated tumor in clinical trial setting.
1. Histologically or cytologically proven melanoma with stage IV or unresectable stage
2. c-kit mutations
3. performance status of 0, 1, and 2
4. Have progressed after 1 previous systemic treatment containing dacarbazine,
temozolomide, or immunotherapy for metastatic melanoma
5. Patients with central nervous system metastasis must have stable neurologic function
without evidence of central nervous system progression within 8 weeks
6. Measurable disease or non-measurable but evaluable disease, according to the Response
Evaluation Criteria in Solid Tumors v1.1
1. Major surgery or radiation therapy within 4 weeks of starting the study treatment
2. History of or known carcinomatous meningitis, or evidence of symptomatic
3. Have received greater than or equal to 2 previous chemotherapy-containing systemic
4. Patients with BRAF or NRAS mutation
5. Prior therapy with a c-kit inhibitor
6. Significant history of cardiac disease, myocardial infarction, or current cardiac
ventricular arrhythmias requiring medication
7. Major surgery within 4 weeks before start of study treatment
8. Active gastrointestinal bleeding
9. Patients treated with co-administration of a strong CYP3A4 inducers
10. Adequate Hematologic, Biochemical, and Organ Function