New emerging drugs in soft tissue sarcoma

Amalia Milano, Gaetano Apice, Ettore Ferrari, Flavio Fazioli, Vincenzo de Rosa, Antonella Salzano de Luna, Rosario Vincenzo Iaffaioli, Francesco Caponigro

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Doxorubicin and ifosfamide are the two most active drugs in the treatment of patients with advanced, soft tissue sarcoma (STS) of most histologic subtypes, aside from gastrointestinal stromal tumor (GIST). However, after failure of these drugs, alone or in combination, patients with advanced STS have few therapeutic options and the search for new active drugs is well worth pursuing. ET-743, a DNA minor groove binder, which blocks cell cycle progression in G2/M phase through a p53-independent apoptotic process, represents the most promising among novel compounds in STS, since recently completed phase II trials have consistently shown high survival, in spite of the relatively low incidence of major objective responses. The potential for combination with other active compounds further increases the appeal of ET-743. Imatinib mesylate is being tested also in STS other than GIST, which can overexpress one or more of the tyrosine kinases inhibited by imatinib; however, negative data have recently been presented. Clinical studies with a number of other compounds are ongoing or planned. However, investigators involved in the management of patients with advanced STS are to be increasingly aware of the emergence of new molecular targets and genetic profiles in different histologic subtypes, according to which treatment strategies should be adapted.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)74-84
Number of pages11
JournalCritical Reviews in Oncology/Hematology
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - Jul 2006


  • ET-743
  • Imatinib
  • New drugs
  • Soft tissue sarcoma

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Cancer Research
  • Hematology
  • Oncology


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