Professor Charles Sawyer explains that EGF receptor happens to be the driver in at least 10% of lung cancer patients in the U.S.
Charles Sawyer, M.D. is professor of medicine and director of the Prostate Cancer Program Area at U.C.L.A. Johnsson Comprehensive Cancer Center, and an investigator of the Howard Hughes Medical Institute. He works on therapies that target specific mutations in prostate cancer and chronic myeloid leukemia (CML). Here he describes his work developing a targeted therapy for CML patients with resistance to the anti-cancer drug Gleevec.
“I think in a more general way, this is a paradigm for how we will do this with the whole range of kinase inhibitors that are not quite as fully developed as the Gleevec story, but are coming along. I think the next example will be lung cancer, for which the EGF receptor happens to be the driver in at least 10% of lung cancer patients in the U.S. due to a mutation that was just recently described. In phase one study. The lung cancer patients in that study, a few of them had some benefit. That led to the decision empirically now to do a large study in lung cancer. And when that was done, about 10 percent of patients had miraculous types of responses. And the in other 90 percent nothing happened so that raises some conundrums for clinical development is obviously you would like to understand what was it about those 10 percent of patients.”
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Professor Charles Sawyer explains that CML stands for chronic myeloid leukemia, which is a blood cancer and it is different from many cancers because it starts very slowly and patients when they're first diagnosed don't have many symptoms.