Other New Advances in Drug Therapies for Cancer

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Individuals with cancer and family members often want to know that there are new drugs being developed and approved for all types of cancer. All drugs used for chemotherapy for individuals must be approved by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA). It is not uncommon for a chemotherapy agent to be approved the first time for 1 or 2 types of cancer. At a later date the drug may be approved for other “indications” or treatment for other types of cancer.

An example of a drug that has recently been approved for a new indication is Taxotere® made by Sanofi-Aventis. It was approved on October 17, 2006 for use in combination with cisplatin and fluorouracil for the induction treatment of patients with inoperable, locally advanced squamous cell carcinoma of the head and neck (SCCHN)
More information may be obtained at www.fda.gov/cder/foi/label/2006/020449s039lbl.pdf

On October 11, 2006 the FDA also granted approval for a labeling extension for bevacizumab (Avastin®, Genentech, Inc.). This has been approved to be administered in combination with carboplatin and paclitaxel for the initial systemic treatment of patients with inoperable, locally advanced, recurrent, or metastatic, non-squamous, non-small cell lung cancer. More information may be obtained at www.fda.gov/cder/foi/label/2006/125085s085lbl.pdf

A new drug called vorinostat (Zolina™ by Merck & Co.) was approved by the FDA on October 6, 2006.This drug is a histone deacetylase inhibitor for the treatment of cutaneous (skin) manifestations of cutaneous T-cell lymphoma (CTCL) in patients with progressive, or recurrent disease on or following 2 systemic therapies. More information may be obtained at www.fda.gov/cder/foi/label/2006/02/021991lbl.pdf

Introgen Therapeutics, Inc. has started reporting data from clinical studies of a drug called Advexin p53. This drug can be used in patients with cancers of the head and neck, lung, breast, and esophagus. Advexin works by shrinking tumors, halts tumor growth and improves symptoms in patients with multiple types of cancers that have an abnormal p53. tumor suppressor function. More information may be obtained at www.introgen.com or calling 512-708-9310.

If you have an interest in obtaining cancer news via the internet you may try some of the following sites:

Cancer News by CancerSource
http://csweb03.cancersource.com/NewsFeatures/News/index.cfm?DiseaseID=1

Cancer Statistics by the American Cancer Society
http://www.cancer.org/docroot/stt/stt_0.asp

Cancer Treatment News by the Cancer Consultants
http://www.cancerconsultants.com/index.php
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About the Author


BA, MPH

Steve shares what he learned from his personal experience with cancer.

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