Targeted therapy for bone cancer
As doctors have learned more about the changes in cells that cause cancer, they have been able to develop newer drugs that target some of these changes. These targeted drugs work differently from standard chemo drugs and have different side effects. Targeted drugs are proving to be especially helpful in diseases like chordoma and other bone cancers, where chemo has not been very useful.
The drug imatinib (Gleevec®) is a targeted therapy drug that can block the signals from certain genes. This can cause some tumors to stop growing or even shrink a little. Imatinib is used to treat chordomas that have spread or have come back after treatment. Imatinib has been used to treat chordoma for several years, but it isn’t approved by the Food and Drug Administration to treat this type of cancer. It is approved to treat more common cancers.
Last Medical Review: 12/05/2012
Last Revised: 01/24/2013