Newer Cancer Drugs Fall Short Of Claims

Cancer is a dreaded disease as there is a long, painful journey on course to recovery. However, drugs like Tamoxifen, discovered decades ago have given some respite to the cancer patients. Nevertheless, the progress against the battle on cancer is slow as nothing substantial has been since discovered. The newer drugs that have been discovered have failed to live up to the expectations and the claims. In addition, these drugs are priced so high that they are beyond the reach of even the rich countries.

At the meeting which was held for two days in Lugano, Switzerland and attended by cancer specialists from around the world, the doctors agreed upon a declaration that had 10 points specifying the cancer care to be provided around the globe. The specialists believed that there was still much to be done in improving the treatment and care of patients while also concentrating on preventing the onset of cancer in newer patients.

A few years back, cancer experts and specialists had hoped that the arrival of certain messages targeted to attack the genetic makeup of the tumor would bring about dramatic changes to the way cancer would be cured. However, that never happened as the new therapies that were introduced only added a few more months of life and nothing else. Therefore, as per the experts, the question of whether the war on cancer was won or not, the answer was a clear no.

The targeted drugs which had generated quite a lot of interest due to the theory of interference with specific molecules that were involved in the suppression and tumor growth had been short-lived. While the success of BRAF-inhibitor vemurafenib had been very received as it had shown miraculous results on skin cancer, the cancer came back with a vengeance just six months later.

Other drugs that worked similarly for lung, breast, colorectal and forms of cancer did not fare well too. The patients developed resistance to these drugs rather quickly. What the doctors anticipate is that these drugs could either be used in combination with older drugs or other drugs but the price would have to be brought down for it to be used on a widespread basis.

The cancer specialists present at the meeting agreed that changes were required in areas of research. They also insisted upon the regulation and funding of projects speedily so that ways could be developed to tackle the menace of diseases that were curable and preventable.