New Discoveries and Honors in Cancer Research

Read the latest cancer research and recognition from the members of the Damon Runyon scientific circle.
September 9, 2011
Understanding resistance to Erbitux

Ramesh A. Shivdasani, MD, PhD (Damon Runyon Scholar ‘98-‘99) of Dana-Farber Cancer Institute, Boston, and colleagues discovered a mechanism for how cancer cells become resistant to cetuximab/Erbitux, which is used to treat colorectal cancer or squamous cell cancer of the head and neck. They reported that a protein called ERBB2 allows cells to remain unresponsive to the drug. The study suggests that combining cetuximab with ERBB2-inhibiting drugs could be an effective therapy to both heighten and/or restore the drug’s potency. These findings were published in the journal Science Translational Medicine