Glomerulonephritis and granulomatous vasculitis in kidney as a complication of the use of BRAF and MEK inhibitors in the treatment of metastatic melanoma: A case report

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Abstract

Rationale:

BRAF and MEK inhibitors have significantly improved the prognosis of metastatic melanoma, by inhibiting both the mitogen-activated protein kinase (MAP-kinase) pathway. They are associated with infrequent adverse kidney events. Most of these are related to the use of BRAF inhibitors and involve interstitial nephritis with acute tubular necrosis.

Patient concerns:

We report a unique case of glomerulonephritis with renal granulomatous vasculitis in a patient diagnosed with metastatic melanoma treated with BRAF and MEK inhibitors. The patient was a 55-year old woman, who presented a melanoma of the right thigh with pulmonary metastasis. Treatment started in November 2015, with Encorafenib and Binimetinib, new BRAF and MEK inhibitors, respectively. Two months after the beginning of the treatment, there was a worsening of her renal function with significant proteinuria.

Diagnoses:

Kidney biopsy showed extracapillary proliferation in the glomeruli with a granulomatous reaction.

Interventions and outcomes:

Renal function recovered completely after withdrawal of the chemotherapy.

Lessons:

All the reported kidney adverse events secondary to BRAF and MEK inhibitors in the literature are related to the use of BRAF inhibitors. Some previous reported mechanistic investigations also provide insight between BRAF inhibitors and podocytes injuries. Therefore, encorafenib most likely is the main responsible of the disease. However, evidence has emerged that inhibition of the MAP kinase pathway could also enhance autoimmunity. Thus, binimetinib may also have played a role and the combination of BRAF and MEK inhibitors may have facilitated this autoimmune kidney disease.

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