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Lung Cancer: Genes Predict Response to Tarceva

Conquest - Summer 2011

Lauren Averett Byers, M.D., and John Heymach, M.D., 
Ph.D., worked together to better understand gene 
response to Tarceva.
Photo: Karen Hensley

 Approximately 12% of lung cancer patients benefit from erlotinib, commercially known as Tarceva®. By checking for certain mutations and amplifications of the epidermal growth factor receptor (EGFR), clinicians can identify this group.

Fortunately, recent discoveries show that response to treatment with Tarceva also can be predicted for patients who have no guiding indicators for their treatment.

“Two biomarker sets have potentially broad impact by covering the 88% of patients who lack the EGFR mutations,” says John Heymach, M.D., Ph.D., associate professor in MD Anderson’s Department of Thoracic/Head and Neck Medical Oncology.

Reported in April 2011 at the 102nd Annual Meeting of the American Association for Cancer Research.

© 2015 The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center