Dr. Cristofanilli Discusses ALK Amplification in IBC

Massimo Cristofanilli, MD
Published: Tuesday, Oct 23, 2012

Massimo Cristofanilli, MD, Chair in Medical Oncology, Director of Translational Science, Cancer Genome Institute, Fox Chase Cancer Center, discusses the investigation of small-molecule anaplastic lymphoma kinase (ALK) inhibitors to treat patients with inflammatory breast cancer (IBC).

Cristofanilli notes that similar to other malignancies abnormalities in ALK seem to be a feature of IBC. As a result, several preclinical and early-stage trials have been undertaken to examine the efficacy of inhibiting ALK in IBC.

A preclinical study examining the ALK-targeted agent crizotinib showed superiority to chemotherapy for patients with IBC. Additionally, in a phase I trial the investigatory agent LDK378 was used to treat patients with tumors that were characterized by abnormalities in the ALK gene. This trial enrolled 4 patients with IBC in the dose escalation phase with plans to enroll further patients in the expansion portion of the trial, Cristofanilli adds.

Researchers are in the early phases of studying the mechanism of ALK-related oncogenicity in IBC, with the hope that it will lead to a new treatment model.

Massimo Cristofanilli, MD, Chair in Medical Oncology, Director of Translational Science, Cancer Genome Institute, Fox Chase Cancer Center, discusses the investigation of small-molecule anaplastic lymphoma kinase (ALK) inhibitors to treat patients with inflammatory breast cancer (IBC).

Cristofanilli notes that similar to other malignancies abnormalities in ALK seem to be a feature of IBC. As a result, several preclinical and early-stage trials have been undertaken to examine the efficacy of inhibiting ALK in IBC.

A preclinical study examining the ALK-targeted agent crizotinib showed superiority to chemotherapy for patients with IBC. Additionally, in a phase I trial the investigatory agent LDK378 was used to treat patients with tumors that were characterized by abnormalities in the ALK gene. This trial enrolled 4 patients with IBC in the dose escalation phase with plans to enroll further patients in the expansion portion of the trial, Cristofanilli adds.

Researchers are in the early phases of studying the mechanism of ALK-related oncogenicity in IBC, with the hope that it will lead to a new treatment model.


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