Review Article| Volume 223, ISSUE 5, P879-883, May 2022

Reevaluating the prognostic role of BRAF mutation in colorectal cancer liver metastases

Published:September 08, 2021DOI:


      • BRAF mutations decrease overall survival of patients with resectable colorectal liver metastases by 180%.
      • BRAF mutations increase the risk for disease recurrence in patients undergoing curative intent liver metastasectomy by 129%.
      • The effect was especially pronounced in the subgroup of patients with wild-type (versus unknown) KRAS status.
      • The V600E variant of BRAF mutation is likely linked to even worse outcomes.



      Mutations in the BRAF proto-oncogene have been shown to predict poor patient survival following curative-intent liver surgery for metastatic colorectal cancer. The aim of the present systematic review and meta-analysis is to evaluate the effect of mutated BRAF status (mutBRAF) on the overall (OS) and disease-free survival (DFS) in these patients.


      A comprehensive literature search was performed for studies reporting outcomes of patients undergoing curative-intent surgery stratified by BRAF mutation status. Subgroup analysis was performed to evaluate whether inclusion of KRAS mutation status significantly influenced the results.


      Six studies incorporating 1857 patients with known BRAF status were identified. Pooled results revealed significantly worse OS (Hazard Ratio 2.8, 95% C.I. 2.09 to 3.77) and DFS (Hazard Ratio 2.29, 95% C.I. 2.09 to 3.77) in mutBRAF patients. Subgroup analysis revealed no statistically significant impact of including KRAS status testing on the obtained results.


      Patients with metastatic colorectal cancer carrying BRAF mutations have significantly worse oncologic outcomes following surgery and more aggressive disease phenotype overall.


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