The PI3K/AKT/mTOR and CDK4/6 Pathways in Endocrine Resistant HR+/HER2- Metastatic Breast Cancer: Biological Mechanisms and New Treatments

Daniele Presti, Erica Quaquarini

Research output: Contribution to journalReview article

Abstract

Endocrine-based treatments are the normal standard-of-care in women with hormone receptor-positive/Human Epidermal growth factor Receptor 2-negative metastatic breast cancer. Despite the well-known efficacy of these drugs as first-line therapies, about 50% of women develop endocrine resistance and disease progression. The treatment of these patients has represented one of the most important research fields in the last few years, with several multicenter phase II/III trials published or still ongoing. Novel therapies, such as cyclin-dependent kinase (CDK)4/6 and phosphatidylinositol 3-kinase (PI3K)/protein kinase B (AKT)/mammalian target of rapamycin (mTOR) inhibitors, have significantly changed the prognosis of patients progressing to a previous endocrine treatment, allowing a great benefit in terms of progression-free survival and, in some cases, of overall survival. However, identifying response predictors is essential for the rational use of these drugs to avoid unnecessary toxicity and costs, and to ensure the optimal therapeutic sequence is used. In this review, we analyze the PI3K/AKT/mTOR and CDK4/6 pathways and their roles in endocrine resistant metastatic breast cancer. We then focus on the new treatments developed and the roles of these drugs in overcoming endocrine resistance, describing the latest clinical trials that led to the approval of the drugs in clinical practice.

Original languageEnglish
JournalCancers
Volume11
Issue number9
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Aug 24 2019

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