Philip A. Philip, MD, PhD, FRCP, professor, Department of Oncology, Barbara Ann Karmanos Cancer Institute, discusses research questions with Lutathera in the treatment of patients with neuroendocrine tumors.
Philip A. Philip, MD, PhD, FRCP, professor of Medicine, Wayne State University School of Medicine, clinical professor of Oncology at Barbara Ann Karmanos Cancer Institute, discusses research questions with Lutathera (lutetium Lu 177 dotatate) in the treatment of patients with neuroendocrine tumors (NETs).
For the first time, there is an effective therapy leading to tumor shrinkage in this patient population, but it does not mark the end of research, Philip says. There are still a number of unanswered questions in this space. Mainly, researchers are trying to determine the optimal patients to receive this therapy as well as where it should be sequenced in therapy. For example, should patients start with Lutathera right at diagnosis? At this point, physicians aren’t doing that, but there may be patients who benefit from this approach.
Another area of research is looking at combining Lutathera with other treatment modalities. Immunotherapy is a combination approach of interest because radiation has been shown to enhance immune response. Philip concludes that this is an exciting time for patients with NETs. Moving forward, researchers have to not only focus on prolonging survival but also maintaining the quality of life (QoL) for patients.