Sutent® (There may be other names for this medication)
How Is It Administered?
Sunitinib malate comes as a tablet to taken by mouth, with or without food. Avoid grapefruit and grapefruit juice.
What Is It Used For?
Treats late-stage kidney cancer and gastrointestinal stromal tumors.
How Does it Work?
Sunitinib is a type of targeted therapy rather than a traditional chemotherapy drug. Traditional chemotherapy drugs identify cancer cells by their rapid rate of reproduction, and then attack those cells. Unfortunately, there are many cells in our bodies that normally reproduce rapidly and these cells are also affected by traditional chemotherapy drugs, resulting in many unpleasant side effects.
Sunitinib is designed to work differently. Instead of attacking rapidly reproducing cells, it attacks the cancer by stopping the formation of blood vessels and cutting off the oxygen and nutrients that the cancer needs. This may slow the growth and spread of tumors.
Sunitinib is in a class of medications called antiangiogenic agents.