Send to

Choose Destination
Expert Opin Emerg Drugs. 2007 May;12(2):253-70.

Emerging therapies for the treatment of patients with advanced neuroendocrine tumors.

Author information

Dana-Farber Cancer Institute, Department of Medical Oncology, 44 Binney Street, Boston, MA 02115, USA.


Patients with neuroendocrine tumors may pursue a number of treatment options, but there is little consensus on a single, standard treatment approach. Somatostatin analogs are generally administered to patients with symptoms of hormonal secretion, and are often highly effective in this regard. However, the administration of somatostatin analogs is only rarely associated with tumor regression, and randomized trials demonstrating a survival benefit associated with their use have not been performed. Selected patients with hepatic metastases may undergo surgical debulking, embolization or other ablative therapies. The clinical benefit associated with administration of systemic agents such as IFN-alpha or cytotoxic chemotherapy has been limited. With the possible exception of streptozocin-based therapy in patients with pancreatic neuroendocrine tumors, the widespread use of standard cytotoxic regimens has been limited by their relatively modest antitumor activity, as well as concerns regarding their potential toxicity. The modest efficacy seen with these agents in patients with advanced neuroendocrine tumors has led to great interest in the development of novel treatment approaches. One such approach is the use of radiolabeled somatostatin analogs. Recently, agents targeting the VEGF pathway and mammalian target of rapamycin have also shown promise in patients with advanced neuroendocrine tumors. Ongoing randomized studies should help better define the role these agents will play in the future treatment of patients with this disease.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

Supplemental Content

Full text links

Icon for Taylor & Francis
Loading ...
Support Center