Mucosal injury during anti-cancer treatment: From pathobiology to bedside

Debora Basile, Paola Di Nardo, Carla Corvaja, Silvio Ken Garattini, Giacomo Pelizzari, Camilla Lisanti, Lucia Bortot, Lucia Da Ros, Michele Bartoletti, Matteo Borghi, Lorenzo Gerratana, Davide Lombardi, Fabio Puglisi

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review


Mucositis is one of the most common debilitating side effects related to chemotherapy (CT), radiation therapy (RT), targeted agents and immunotherapy. It is a complex process potentially involving any portion of the gastrointestinal tract and injuring the mucosa, leading to inflammatory or ulcerative lesions. Mechanisms and clinical presentation can differ according both to the anatomic site involved (oral or gastrointestinal) and the treatment received. Understanding the pathophysiology and management of mucosal injury as a secondary effect of anti-cancer treatment is an important area of clinical research. Prophylaxis, early diagnosis, and adequate management of complications are essential to increase therapeutic success and, thus, improve the survival outcomes of cancer patients. This review focuses on the pathobiology and management guidelines for mucositis, a secondary effect of old and new anti-cancer treatments, highlighting recent advances in prevention and discussing future research options.

Original languageEnglish
Article number857
Number of pages22
Issue number6
Publication statusPublished - Jun 2019


  • Anti-cancer treatments
  • Mucosal impairment
  • Mucosal injury
  • Mucositis

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Oncology
  • Cancer Research


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