Dr. Socinski on the Evolving Paradigm of Targeted Therapy in Lung Cancer


Mark A. Socinski, MD, discusses the evolving paradigm of targeted therapy in lung cancer.

Mark A. Socinski, MD, executive medical director of the AdventHealth Cancer Institute, discusses the evolving paradigm of targeted therapy in lung cancer.

During week 2 of the 2021 AACR Annual Meeting, Socinski gave a presentation on advances that have been made in the diagnosis, screening, and treatment of lung cancer. In terms of treatment, the incorporation of targeted therapy into the lung cancer armamentarium has revolutionized the treatment of patients with specific genomic abnormalities, says Socinski. However, the first step in getting patients matched with a targeted therapy is to perform comprehensive genomic testing, which remains underutilized in the United States, Socinski explains. Without an accurate diagnosis, patients cannot benefit from the growing list of FDA-approved targeted options, Socinski adds.

In eligible patients, targeted therapies have demonstrated high efficacy compared with chemotherapy, Socinski explains. Moreover, these patients would likely not respond as well, if at all, to immunotherapy, Socinski adds.

Despite these advances, additional research is needed to understand resistance mechanisms to first-line TKIs, Socinski says. Although many patients derive durable responses with TKIs in the frontline setting, identifying resistance patterns and overcoming them remains challenging, Socinski says. As such, novel strategies or combination regimens could answer some of the remaining questions with resistance mechanisms and ensure that each patient receives the optimal treatment, concludes Socinski.