Torisel® (There may be other names for this medication.)
How is Temsirolimus Administered?
Your medication will be given by infusion (slow injection into a vein) over 30 to 60 minutes, usually once a week.
Why am I Taking Temsirolimus?
This drug is used to treat advanced renal cell (kidney) cancer.
How Does Temsirolimus Work?
Traditional chemotherapy drugs identify cancer cells by their rapid rate of reproduction, and then attack those cells. Since there are normal cells that naturally reproduce rapidly, these cells are also affected by traditional chemotherapy drugs, resulting in unpleasant side effects.
Temsirolimus is designed to work differently. As an mTOR (mammalian target for rapamycin) inhibitor, it interferes with the master switch in the cells that controls growth and reproduction. Although mTOR is found in all your cells, it is particularly important for cancer cells that aggressively invade nearby tissues. By interfering with the master switch of these cancer cells, growth and reproduction are interrupted, and the cells die.
Temsirolimus also reduces levels of growth factors that the tumor needs to create new blood vessels. By blocking the creation of these new blood vessels (a process called antiangiogenesis), the tumor is deprived of the oxygen and nutrients it needs to grow, ultimately causing the cells to starve.