Dr. Massarelli on First-Line ALK+ NSCLC Treatment

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Erminia Massarelli, MD, PhD, MS, associate clinical professor, Department of Medical Oncology and Therapeutics Research, City of Hope, discusses the adoption of alectinib (Alecensa) as the first-line therapy in the treatment of patients with ALK-positive non–small cell lung cancer (NSCLC).

Erminia Massarelli, MD, PhD, MS, associate clinical professor, Department of Medical Oncology and Therapeutics Research, City of Hope, discusses the adoption of alectinib (Alecensa) as the first-line therapy in the treatment of patients with ALK-positive non—small cell lung cancer (NSCLC).

The new standard first-line therapy for patients with ALK-positive NSCLC is alectinib (Alecensa). It has proven to be particularly effective in treating patients who have brain metastases. In one clinical trial, there was a head-to-head comparison between alectinib and crizotinib (Xalkori). The patients who received alectinib had better progression-free survival (PFS) and less development of brain metastases than the patients on crizotinib.

The side effect profile is also better in alectinib in comparison with crizotinib and ceritinib (Zykadia). Overall, alectinib is an easier drug to manage in patients and facilitates less breaks in therapy, Massarelli concludes.

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