Roman Perez-Soler, MD, Chairman, Department of Oncology, Montefiore Medical Center, Albert Einstein College of Medicine of Yeshiva University, talks about the recent advances in treatment options for non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC).
Perez-Soler states that targeted agents represent the most dramatic changes in the treatment of NSCLC. New agents are available that target subgroups with molecular alterations in EGFR and ALK. These alterations are driver mutations in tumor cells and as a result render high response rates.
Despite the initial response to a medication most tumors will eventually develop resistance. The next step for research is to understand how these tumors develop these resistance mechanisms.
Locally advanced non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC) remains a challenging disease to treat, with a 5-year survival rate for patients with unresectable stage III disease of approximately 20%, even after definitive radiation therapy and concurrent chemotherapy.