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World J Urol. 2009 Aug;27(4):471-6. doi: 10.1007/s00345-009-0404-2. Epub 2009 Mar 28.

Chemotherapy for patients with poor prognosis germ cell tumors.

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  • 1Division of Hematology/Oncology, Department of Medicine, Abramson Cancer Center, University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia, PA 19104-4283, USA.


Germ cell tumors (GCTs) are the most common solid malignancy in young adult males. Approximately 28% of metastatic non-seminomatous GCTs have features that confer a poor prognosis, as defined by the International Germ Cell Consensus Classification. Five-year survival rates in poor prognosis GCTs remain about 50%. Despite numerous clinical trials testing a range of approaches, four cycles of bleomycin, etoposide, and cisplatin remain the standard of care for patients with poor-risk disease. Further improvements in the outcomes of patients with poor-risk GCTs might be achieved by incorporating targeted therapies into existing regimens, and by improving our understanding of the mechanism of cisplatin insensitivity.

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