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By: Prathap Shastri

Quick Perspective on Old-Style Chemo Is Still A Mainstay In The Age Of Targeted Cancer Therapy

The comments from the doctors and the patients in this article are a valuable reminder of the importance of the work we do in developing novel drug candidates in search of prevention/cure for deadly diseases such as cancer. The new drug modalities, such as antibody-drug conjugates, bi-specific antibodies, fynomers, are all great examples of technology advancements and improved hopes for finding a cure for cancer. While all these new modalities offer unique advantages, they pose significant challenges during development including but not limited to the stability, scale up, exaggerated pharmacology, and off-target toxicity. Thus, combination therapy plays a vital role for treating cancer where it is critical to strike the balance between toxicity and pharmacodynamics. FOr example, the recent approval of a new drug (Kisqali) from Novartis showed improved efficacy in postmenopausal women with HR+/HER2- advanced or metastatic breast cancer following combination treatment with letrozole.

With one of the main themes for the 2017 AAPS Annual Meeting and Exposition being “Emerging Modalities for Oncology,” there is certainly no shortage of opportunities to share and mutual exchange of knowledge in the field!

PRATHAP SHASTRI works for the pharmacology group at AMBRX in san Diego, CA. Prior to joining ambrx, he worked at Charles river laboratories and Seventh Wave Laboratories within the DMPK group.