Targeted inhibition in tumors with ALK dependency
Eunice L Kwak, Jeffrey W Clark, Alice T Shaw
Massachusetts General Hospital Cancer Center, Boston, MA, USA
Abstract: The oncogenic function of gene translocations involving the anaplastic lymphoma kinase (ALK) was first reported in rare subtypes of non-Hodgkin's lymphoma almost two decades ago. More recently, aberrant ALK signaling was found to be an oncogenic driver in subsets of non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC), particularly in patients with little or no tobacco smoking history. The advent of molecularly targeted therapies that inhibit ALK has allowed the pairing of ALK inhibitors such as crizotinib as treatment for ALK-positive NSCLC, yielding dramatic responses and long-term disease control. The clinicopathologic features of ALK-driven NSCLC, the clinical development of ALK inhibitors, and the genetic determinants of acquired resistance to ALK inhibition are among the topics covered in this review.
Keywords: targeted inhibition, tumors, ALK dependency
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