Article Abstract

State of the art management of metastatic gastroesophageal cancer

Authors: Adrian G. Murphy, David Lynch, Ronan J. Kelly

Abstract

The anatomical locations of upper gastrointestinal (GI) tumors have changed remarkably in the western world and reflect the increasing impact of obesity and gastroesophageal (GE) reflux rather than infectious etiologies. Incidence rates of GE tumors are rising rapidly and survival rates for patients with metastatic disease remain poor. Traditionally, cytotoxic chemotherapy has had some survival advantages but increasingly complex combination regimens are limited by toxicities. The advent of molecularly targeted therapy has provided additional options for patients with advanced disease including trastuzumab and ramucirumab. There has also been detailed molecular characterization of upper GI tumors which hopefully will result in improved tailoring of clinical trial design accounting for the heterogeneity inherent in GE tumors. While numerous targeted therapies are currently being studied in clinical trials, there is much excitement regarding the role of immunotherapy in GE cancers. Although further investigation is warranted, it represents a promising avenue for patients with advanced GE tumors.

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