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Targeted therapy is a type of medication which blocks the growth of cancer cells by interfering with specific targeted molecules needed for carcinogenesis and tumor growth, rather than by simply interfering with rapidly dividing cells. Targeted cancer therapies may be more effective than current treatments and less harmful to normal cells.
The main categories of targeted therapy are small molecules and monoclonal antibodies.
Main article: Monoclonal antibody therapy
Several are in development and a few have been licenced by the FDA. Examples of licenced monoclonal antibodies include:
Progress and future
Many oncologists believe that targeted therapies are the chemotherapy of the future. As solid tumor cancer continues to be viewed as a chronic condition, methods for long-term treatment, with less side-effects, continue to be investigated.
In the U.S., the National Cancer Institute's Molecular Targets Development Program (MTDP) to identify and evaluate molecular targets that may be candidates for drug development.
The next stage of targeted therapies will focus on finding which patients will respond to which targeted therapies. This is called the identification of "sub-populations". The route to identify these sub-populations is through biomarkers and surrogate endpoints.
One agent which seems to be promising is cannabidiol, a non-toxic substance found in cannabis which has been found to reduce growth and invasiveness of cancer cells in vitro.
|This article is licensed under the GNU Free Documentation License. It uses material from the Wikipedia article "Targeted_therapy". A list of authors is available in Wikipedia.|