Among molecular mechanisms of tumor growth and progression, activated epidermal growth factor receptor-tyrosine kinase is remarkable for its prevalence and Impact on many different solid tumor types, as well as its link to diverse stages of disease. ZD1839, (Iressa; AstraZeneca Pharmaceuficals LP, Wilmington, DE) an oral epidermal growth factor receptor-tyrosine Kinase inhibitor, is also being explored for its potential in the treatment of other common solid tumors, including breast cancer, colorectal cancer, and hormone-refractory prostate cancer. Clinical trials include studies of ZD1839 as monotherapy and in combination with varlous chemotherapy, radiation, and hormone therapy regimens. ZD1839 is also being studied in conjunction with other targeted therapies, such as trastuzumab. In addition to advanced and refractory disease, ZD1839 may also be applicable for use in earlier stage cancers. Chemoprevention trials have been initiated to assess the potential of ZD1839 to delay or prevent the progression of common solid tumors such as non-small cell lung cancer.
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