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Profile of alectinib for the treatment of ALK-positive non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC): patient selection and perspectives

Authors Karachaliou N, Fernandez Bruno M, Bracht JWP, Rosell R

Received 5 March 2019

Accepted for publication 10 April 2019

Published 13 June 2019 Volume 2019:12 Pages 4567—4575

DOI https://doi.org/10.2147/OTT.S174548

Checked for plagiarism Yes

Review by Single-blind

Peer reviewers approved by Ms Rachel Predeepa

Peer reviewer comments 3

Editor who approved publication: Dr Leo Jen-Liang Su


Niki Karachaliou,1,2 Manuel Fernandez Bruno,1 Jillian Wilhelmina Paulina Bracht,2 Rafael Rosell2–5

1Institute of Oncology Rosell (IOR), University Hospital Sagrat Cor, QuironSalud Group, Barcelona, Spain; 2Molecular and Cellular Oncology Laboratory, Pangaea Oncology, Laboratory of Molecular Biology, Quiron-Dexeus University Institute, Barcelona, Spain; 3Institut d’Investigació en Ciències Germans Trias i Pujol, Badalona, Spain; 4Catalan Institute of Oncology, Medical Oncology Service, Hospital Germans Trias i Pujol, Badalona, Spain; 5Instituto Oncológico Dr Rosell (IOR), Quirón-Dexeus University Institute, Barcelona, Spain

Abstract: Discovered in 2007, anaplastic lymphoma kinase (ALK) gene rearrangements positive (ALK+) lung cancers compose a small subset of non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC), with rapidly expanded treatments. There are currently several ALK inhibitors, including crizotinib, ceritinib, alectinib, brigatinib, and lorlatinib which have been licensed by the US Food and Drug Administration or the European Medicines Agency for the treatment of ALK+ NSCLC patients. Along with the multiple therapies, the survival of this subtype of NSCLC has been significantly expanded, even for patients whose disease has spread in the brain. Alectinib (Alecensa), a specific ALK and rearranged during transfection tyrosine kinase inhibitor is approved as first-line therapy for metastatic ALK+ NSCLC patients. It is additionally approved for ALK+ NSCLC previously treated with crizotinib. The main aim of this review is to assemble on the efficacy of alectinib for the treatment of ALK+ NSCLC, to elaborate the activity of the drug in the central nervous system, and to debate on which is the position of this compound in the treatment course of ALK+ lung cancer patients.

Keywords: anaplastic lymphoma kinase, alectinib, lung cancer

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