Scientists Discover How Cancer Outwits Erbitux

Recent studies are showing how tumors sidestep targeted cancer drugs by activating other growth-promoting molecules. The findings may help doctors develop new drug combinations that squelch the resistance, said Pasi Janne, senior author of the study and a medical oncologist at Dana-Farber Cancer Institute and Harvard Medical School in Boston.

“Until now we didn’t know what caused acquired resistance to Erbitux,” Janne said in a telephone interview. “Our hope is that this will very rapidly translate into clinical trials” of new drug combinations. The study, done in collaboration with researchers at Kinki University School of Medicine in Osaka, Japan and other universities, is published today in Science Translational Medicine.

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