Novel compounds in the treatment of lung cancer: current and developing therapeutic agents
Rudi Bao, Pokman Chan
Oncology, Curis Inc, Lexington, MA, USA
Abstract: Lung cancer is the leading cause of cancer-related death in the United States. Though incremental advances have been made in the treatment of this devastating disease during the past decade, new therapies are urgently needed. Traditional cytotoxic agents have been combined with other modalities with improved survival for early-stage patients. Newer cytotoxic agents targeting the same or different mechanisms have been developed at different stages. Optimization of various chemotherapy regimens in different settings is one of the aims of current clinical trials. Some predictive biomarkers (eg, excision repair cross-complementing 1, ERCC1) and histotypes (eg, adenocarcinoma) are found to be associated with resistance/response to some cytotoxic drugs. Another notable advance is the addition of targeted therapy to lung cancer treatment. Targeted agents such as erlotinib and bevacizumab have demonstrated clinical benefits and gained Food and Drug Administration approval for lung cancer. More agents targeting various signaling pathways critical to lung cancer are at different stages of development. Along with the effort of new targeted drug discovery, biomarkers such as epidermal growth factor receptor and anaplastic lymphoma kinase mutations have proven useful for patient selection, and more predictive biomarkers have been actively evaluated in non-small cell lung cancer. The paradigm of lung cancer treatment has shifted towards biomarker-based personalized medicine.
Keywords: lung cancer, therapy, cytotoxic agents, targeted agents
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