The role of new agents in the treatment of non-small cell lung cancer

Eur J Cancer. 2002 Dec;38(18):2347-61. doi: 10.1016/s0959-8049(02)00457-4.


Lung cancer is one of the most frequent causes of cancer deaths worldwide. Non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC) accounts for approximately 80% of cases and no curative treatment is available for the advanced stages of disease (stages III and IV), which comprise the majority of cases. Current treatment regimens with standard chemotherapy offer only a limited survival benefit, and, therefore, the development of new therapeutic strategies is needed. Novel chemotherapeutic drugs such as the epothilones, MEN 10755 and S-1 are being studied in patients with advanced stages of disease. Furthermore, a large number of therapies targeted against critical biological abnormalities in NSCLC are being investigated in clinical trials. The latter approach includes inhibition of growth factors, interference with abnormal signal transduction, inhibition of angiogenesis and gene replacement therapy. Promising results have thus far been obtained with some of these therapies. This review describes the role of new therapeutic agents in the treatment of NSCLC.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Alkyl and Aryl Transferases / antagonists & inhibitors
  • Angiogenesis Inhibitors / therapeutic use
  • Antineoplastic Agents / therapeutic use*
  • Biological Products / therapeutic use
  • Carcinoma, Non-Small-Cell Lung / drug therapy*
  • Clinical Trials as Topic
  • DNA, Antisense
  • Drug Design
  • ErbB Receptors / antagonists & inhibitors
  • Farnesyltranstransferase
  • Genetic Therapy / methods
  • Humans
  • Lung Neoplasms / drug therapy*
  • Matrix Metalloproteinases / metabolism


  • Angiogenesis Inhibitors
  • Antineoplastic Agents
  • Biological Products
  • DNA, Antisense
  • Alkyl and Aryl Transferases
  • Farnesyltranstransferase
  • ErbB Receptors
  • Matrix Metalloproteinases