Corey J. Langer, MD, from the University of Pennsylvania, Abramson Cancer Center, discusses the EGFR-targeted tyrosine kinase inhibitor erlotinib for patients with non-small cell lung cancer.
Corey J. Langer, MD, Professor of Medicine, Hematology/Oncology Division, University of Pennsylvania, Abramson Cancer Center, discusses the EGFR-targeted tyrosine kinase inhibitor erlotinib (Tarceva) for patients with non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC).
Langer explains that the current approval for erlotinib is in patients with unselected second- and third-line, locally advanced or metastatic NSCLC. The approval was based on clinical trials showing that the agent improved response rates, overall survival, and progression-free survival when compared to placebo. Two trials examining the agent in the frontline setting did not demonstrate a clinical benefit.
Patients with EGFR mutations derive the greatest benefit from erlotinib, even though it is not specifically approved in this patient population. For patients with EGFR mutations, Langer recommends administering erlotinib in the front-line rather than delaying until later lines of treatment.