Drug sales confirm clinical advantage of multi-target inhibition of drug escapes by anticancer kinase inhibitors

Drug Dev Res. 2019 Mar;80(2):246-252. doi: 10.1002/ddr.21486. Epub 2018 Nov 13.


The clinical advantage of co-targeting cancer drug escape has been indicated by the percentage of these co-targeting drugs among all multi-target drugs in clinics and clinical trials. This clinical advantage needs to be further interrogated from such perspectives as the clinical impact of multi-target inhibition of drug-escape mediators. This impact may be reflected by drug sales data, that is, multi-target inhibition of higher number of drug-escape mediators favors the expanded coverage of drug-resistant patients leading to higher sales. We investigated whether this expectation is followed by the 25 FDA-approved anticancer kinase inhibitors, which were divided into 11 groups of comparable therapeutic mechanisms and approval years. We found 19 (76%) drugs to follow and 3 (12%) drugs not to follow this expectation. The remaining two (8%) and one (4%) drugs cannot be assessed due to insufficient data and incomparability. Therefore, drug sales strongly indicate the clinical advantage of multi-target inhibition of cancer drug escapes.

Keywords: anticancer; co-target; drug-escape pathways; multi-target.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Antineoplastic Agents / economics*
  • Antineoplastic Agents / therapeutic use
  • Commerce
  • Drug Approval
  • Drug Resistance, Neoplasm*
  • Humans
  • Molecular Targeted Therapy*
  • Neoplasms / drug therapy
  • Neoplasms / economics*
  • Protein Kinase Inhibitors / economics*
  • Protein Kinase Inhibitors / therapeutic use
  • Treatment Outcome
  • United States
  • United States Food and Drug Administration


  • Antineoplastic Agents
  • Protein Kinase Inhibitors