Lung cancer therapeutics that target signaling pathways: An update

Thoracic Oncology Program, Department of Surgery, University of California, San Francisco, CA 94115, USA.
Expert Review of Respiratory Medicine 10/2010; 4(5):631-45. DOI: 10.1586/ers.10.64
Source: PubMed


Claiming more than 150,000 lives each year, lung cancer is the deadliest cancer in the USA. First-line treatments in lung cancer include surgical resection and chemotherapy, the latter of which offers only modest survival benefits at the expense of often severe and debilitating side effects. Recent advances in elucidating the molecular biology of lung carcinogenesis have elucidated novel drug targets, and treatments are rapidly evolving into specialized agents that hone in on specific aspects of the disease. Of particular interest is blocking tumor growth by targeting the physiological processes surrounding angiogenesis, pro-tumorigenic growth factor activation, anti-apoptotic cascades and other cancer-promoting signal transduction events. This article looks at several areas of interest to lung cancer therapeutics and considers the current state of affairs surrounding the development of these therapies.

Full-text preview

Available from:
  • Source
    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: Lung being one of the vital and essential organs in the body, lung cancer is a major cause of mortality in the modern human society. Lung cancer can be broadly subdivided into nonsmall cell lung cancer (NSCLC) and small cell lung cancer (SCLC). Although NSCLC is sometimes treated with surgery, the advanced and metastatic NSCLC and SCLC usually respond better to chemotherapy and radiation. The most important targets of these chemotherapeutic agents are various intracellular signaling molecules. The primary focus of this review article is to summarize the description of various cell signaling molecules involved in lung cancer development and their regulation by chemotherapeutic agents. Extensive research work in recent years has identified several cellular signaling molecules that may be intricately involved in the complexity of lung cancer. Some of these cell signaling molecules are epidermal growth factor receptors, vascular endothelial growth factor receptors, mammalian target of rapamycin, mitogen-activated protein kinase phosphatase-1, peroxisome proliferator-activated receptor-gamma, matrix metalloproteinases and receptor for advanced glycation end-products. The present review will strengthen our current knowledge regarding the efficacy of the above-mentioned cell signaling molecules as potential beneficial drug targets against lung cancer.
    Current opinion in pulmonary medicine 07/2011; 17(4):286-91. DOI:10.1097/MCP.0b013e328347bda6 · 2.76 Impact Factor
  • Source
    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: Although lung cancer remains the leading cancer killer in the United States, recently a number of developments indicate future clinical benefit. These include evidence that computed tomography-based screening decreases lung cancer mortality, the use of stereotactic radiation for early-stage tumors, the development of molecular methods to predict chemotherapy sensitivity, and genome-wide expression and mutation analysis data that have uncovered oncogene "addictions" as important therapeutic targets. Perhaps the most significant advance in the treatment of this challenging disease is the introduction of molecularly targeted therapies, a term that currently includes monoclonal antibodies and small-molecule tyrosine kinase inhibitors. The development of effective targeted therapeutics requires knowledge of the genes and pathways involved and how they relate to the biologic behavior of lung cancer. Drugs targeting the epidermal growth factor receptor, anaplastic lymphoma kinase, and vascular endothelial growth factor are now U.S. Food and Drug Administration approved for the treatment of advanced non-small cell lung cancer. These agents are generally better tolerated than conventional chemotherapy and show dramatic efficacy when their use is coupled with a clear understanding of clinical data, mechanism, patient selection, drug interactions, and toxicities. Integrating genome-wide tumor analysis with drug- and targeted agent-responsive phenotypes will provide a wealth of new possibilities for lung cancer-targeted therapeutics. Ongoing research efforts in these areas as well as a discussion of emerging targeted agents being evaluated in clinical trials are the subjects of this review.
    The Cancer Journal 11/2011; 17(6):512-27. DOI:10.1097/PPO.0b013e31823e701a · 4.24 Impact Factor
  • [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: MET is a versatile receptor tyrosine kinase within the human kinome which is activated by its specific natural ligand hepatocyte growth factor (HGF). MET signaling plays an important physiologic role in embryogenesis and early development, whereas its deregulation from an otherwise quiescent signaling state in mature adult tissues can lead to upregulated cell proliferation, survival, scattering, motility and migration, angiogenesis, invasion, and metastasis in tumorigenesis and tumor progression. Studies have shown that MET pathway is activated in many solid and hematological malignancies, including lung cancer, and can be altered through ligand or receptor overexpression, genomic amplification, MET mutations, and alternative splicing. The MET signaling pathway is known to be an important novel target for therapeutic intervention in human cancer. A number of novel therapeutic agents that target the MET/HGF pathway have been tested in early-phase clinical studies with promising results. Phase 3 studies of MET targeting agents have just been initiated. We will review the MET signaling pathway and biology in lung cancer and the recent clinical development and advances of MET/HGF targeting agents with emphasis on discussion of issues and strategies needed to optimize the personalized therapy and further clinical development.
    Journal of thoracic oncology: official publication of the International Association for the Study of Lung Cancer 02/2012; 7(2):459-67. DOI:10.1097/JTO.0b013e3182417e44 · 5.28 Impact Factor
Show more