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Cancer Treat Rev. 2012 Aug;38(5):416-30. doi: 10.1016/j.ctrv.2011.10.003. Epub 2011 Nov 25.

EGFR-mutated oncogene-addicted non-small cell lung cancer: current trends and future prospects.

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Service des Innovations Thérapeutiques Précoces, Institut Gustave Roussy, INSERM Unit 981 and Paris University XI, 39 rue Camille Desmoulins, 94805 Villejuif, France.


Non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC) tumours with certain mutations in the epidermal growth factor receptor (EGFR) tyrosine kinase have been termed 'oncogene addicted' to reflect their dependence on EGFR-mediated pro-survival signalling and their high susceptibility to apoptosis induced by EGFR tyrosine kinase inhibitors (EGFR-TKIs, e.g. gefitinib and erlotinib). The most common mutations (L858R and exon 19 deletions) predict an improved clinical response to first-line oral EGFR-TKIs compared with standard platinum-based chemotherapy in patients with advanced NSCLC. Moreover, these mutations are also prognostic of a relatively indolent course of disease, regardless of treatment, as compared with classical NSCLC. Treatment strategies for oncogene-addicted NSCLC are therefore distinct from those for non-oncogene addicted NSCLC, and will depend on the specific genetic mutation present.

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