Discussing the Potential of Novel Agents for Treatment of GIST

Winston Tan, MD, discusses the emergence of novel agents for the treatment of patients with gastrointestinal stromal tumors, namely agents like avapritinib and ripretinib, which have shown promise in ongoing clinical trials.<br /> &nbsp;

Winston Tan, MD, hematologist/oncologist, Mayo Clinic, discusses the emergence of novel agents for the treatment of patients with gastrointestinal stromal tumors (GIST), namely agents like avapritinib (BLU-285) and ripretinib (DCC-2618), which have shown promise in ongoing clinical trials.

Any drug that has the ability to delay progression of disease is a good treatment option, says Tan. It is also important, however, to find the maximum tolerated dose in clinical trials to limit toxicity in patients with GIST. Another important component to clinical trials is molecular testing. Identifying molecular targets and then hitting those targets may help oncologists to control the disease even longer.

Even with the emergence of promising new agents, physicians should not discount the drugs that are already approved for the treatment of locally advanced GIST in the adjuvant setting. The primary drug is imatinib (Gleevec), which works well for patients withc-KIT