Author(s): Bast RC Jr
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Abstract Cytoreductive surgery and empirical combination chemotherapy have improved 5-year survival for ovarian cancer patients, but have not increased the overall rate of cure. Poor outcomes relate, at least in part, to late diagnosis and to the persistence of dormant ovarian cancer cells that have resisted conventional drugs. Increased understanding of the molecular, cellular and clinical biology of ovarian cancer must be translated into personalized therapy with conventional and targeted agents as well as personalized detection of high-grade cancers in early stages. Different strategies will be required to treat low-grade and high-grade serous cancers as well as other histotypes. Activating mutations of Ras and Raf can be targeted in low-grade cancers. Activation of the PI3K pathway-PI3Kness-and inactivation of BRCA function-BRCAness-can be targeted in high-grade lesions. Inhibition of multiple pathways will be required. Sensitivity of primary cancers to paclitaxel and platinum can be modulated by inhibiting kinases and other molecules that regulate the cell cycle. Dormant ovarian cancer cells may depend upon autophagy, cytokines and growth factors for survival. Early detection can utilize two stage strategies where rising serum biomarker levels prompt imaging in a small fraction of women. Screening can be personalized by taking into account each woman's baseline biomarker levels.
This article was published in Ann Oncol
and referenced in Journal of Clinical & Experimental Pharmacology