Background: Non-small-cell carcinoma of the lung has long been considered a chemotherapeutically resistant neoplasm. Newer agents and combinations are being tested. Methods: The authors have reviewed data on recent and active phase I and phase II trials of several new agents and combinations. Results: New drugs that affect both response rates and survival include vinorelbine, paclitaxel, docetaxel, gemcitabine, topotecan, and irinotecan. Conclusions: The advent of several relatively well-tolerated agents that alone have beneficial effects in advanced non-small-cell lung cancer provides reasonable hope that more effective drug combinations will soon be available for this disease.
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