Role of translational studies in optimizing palliative chemotherapy
© BioMed Central 2005
Published: 27 May 2005
Patients with metastatic breast cancer have a highly variable clinical course. Systemic chemotherapy may decrease symptoms and prolong survival for some patients. However, others experience significant toxicity and achieve little benefit. Predictive markers are needed to determine which patients will benefit from particular chemotherapy agents and which should be offered novel therapeutics.
The English literature related to predictive markers for metastatic cancer was reviewed. Translational studies examining the potential role of tumor profiles in the selection of optimal chemotherapy agents were identified. Particular attention was paid to studies examining sensitivity and resistance to anthracyclines, taxanes, vinorelbine and capecitabine.
This paper will summarize the rapidly expanding data published to data and will discuss clinical trial designs that will facilitate future studies.