For Healthcare Professionals Outside the US
Tafinlar + Mekinist is indicated for adjuvant treatment of adult patients with Stage III melanoma with a BRAF V600 mutation, following complete resection; for first-line treatment of adult patients with unresectable or metastatic melanoma with a BRAF V600 mutation; for adult patients with advanced non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC) with a BRAF V600 mutation.

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Home > About > BRAF V600+ NSCLC > Mechanism of Action

How TAFINLAR + MEKINIST works: Dual targets. One pathway.

A dual-targeting approach that simultaneously hits two key proteins in the MAPK pathway1-3

Tafinlar® (dabrafenib) and Mekinist® (trametinib) mechanism of action (MoA): MAP-K Pathway.
TAFINLAR® (dabrafenib) + MEKINIST® (trametinib) mechanism of action (MoA): MAPK pathway.

Blocking MEK in addition to BRAF is thought to:

  • Reduce the risk of treatment resistance1
  • Improve response rates over monotherapy4
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TAFINLAR + MEKINIST is an approved combination therapy that targets BRAF V600 mutation in NSCLC2,3

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References: 1. Nguyen-Ngoc T, Bouchaab H, Adjei AA, Peters S. BRAF alterations as therapeutic targets in non–small-cell lung cancer. J Thorac Oncol. 2015;10(10):1396-1403. 2. Tafinlar Summary of Product Characteristics. Novartis Pharmaceuticals Corp; 2020. 3. Mekinist Summary of Product Characteristics. Novartis Pharmaceuticals Corp; 2020. 4. Luke JJ, Ott PA. New developments in the treatment of metastatic melanoma – role of dabrafenib–trametinib combination therapy. Drug Healthc Patient Saf. 2014;6:77-88.

COVID-19 Update

Novartis is closely monitoring the evolving COVID-19 pandemic. For the most recent information on how Novartis is responding, visit the COVID-19 Information Center.

During this time of uncertainty it is important to communicate with your patients about COVID-19 to clarify that they should not stop their treatments except under the direction of the treating physician, and to ensure that patients have sufficient drug to avoid any treatment interruptions.

Reach out to your Novartis representative with any questions related to Novartis products.

04/20  G-ONC-1230566

COMBI-AD was a double-blind, placebo-controlled, Phase 3 trial that compared Tafinlar + Mekinist vs placebo4


  • Resection of histologically confirmed Stage IIIA, B, or C with BRAF V600E or BRAF V600K mutation
  • ECOG performance status ≤1
  • No prior systemic anticancer treatment or radiotherapy for melanoma
2 mg QD (n=438)

Placebo (n=432)


  • Primary endpoint was RFS
  • Secondary endpoints were OS, distant metastasis-free survival, freedom from relapse, and safety
COMBI-d phase 3 study: Tafinlar® (dabrafenib) + Mekinist® (trametinib) vs Tafinlar® monotherapy