Targeted Therapy

What is Targeted Therapy for Lung Cancer?

Targeted therapies are drugs that find and attack cancer cells by targeting a specific, unique feature of the cancer cell, such as an abnormal mutation or protein that isn’t found in normal, healthy cells. Some of these drugs are in the form of a pill, taken orally; others are delivered by intravenous (IV) infusion.

The targeted drugs used for lung cancer work in different ways, such as:

  • Inhibiting cancer cells’ ability to grow new blood vessels to feed the tumor
  • Blocking cancer cells’ ability to repair themselves, allowing them to die
  • Interrupting the signals that tells cells to grow and multiply

Approved targeted therapies for lung cancer include:
erlotinib (Tarceva), gefitinib (Iressa), afatinib (Gilotrif), osimertinib (Tagrisso), dabrafenib+trametinib (Tafinlar+ Mekinist), crizotinib (Xalkori), alectinib (Alcensa), ceritinib (Xykadia), brigatinib (Alunbrig).

The Roswell Park Advantage

Genetically Personalized Medicine

Most importantly, we test lung cancer tumors using a molecular profiling test developed at Roswell Park, to determine which targeted therapies or new anti-cancer agents offer you the very best option.

OmniSeq Comprehensive tests your tumor’s DNA and RNA to identify genetic alterations in the cancer, which are “actionable,” meaning we have a drug or anti-cancer agent available that targets that genetic mutation. This test looks at 144 specific genes. Patients can be matched with a targeted therapy, or a clinical trial offering a new agent, that is personalized for their tumor.