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  • Posted by Dr. Chris Gaj
  • June 25, 2019
  • Articles

The Promise and Pitfalls of Molecular Testing in Oncology

 The Promise and Pitfalls of Molecular Testing in Oncology

Dr. Chris Gaj explores the challenges and potential consequences for stakeholders in the US, Europe and emerging markets in the latest issue of pharmaphorum's Deep Dive (Published June 2019).

Early targeted therapies, such as the tyrosine kinase inhibitor erlotinib from Roche/Genentech/OSI, offered the promise of precision medicine to treat cancer at a molecular level. Oncologists noted individual “Lazarus-like” responses to erlotinib, but overall effectiveness was moderate in unselected populations. It was not until the discovery that specific activating mutations in the epidermal growth factor receptor (EGFr) conveyed sensitivity to erlotinib that oncologists could identify the patients most likely to respond and target them for treatment while limiting exposure to those unlikely to respond.

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