James A. Zwiebel, MD | Authors

Current Clinical Trials of Molecularly Targeted Agents in Children With Cancer, Part 2

April 01, 2002

A number of molecularly targeted agents directed at critical cell survival and cell proliferation pathways have recently entered clinical evaluation in children with cancer. These agents offer the potential for more effective anticancer therapy while simultaneously diminishing acute and long-term toxic effects. Systematic evaluations of targeted agents are essential to achieving continued improvements in outcome for children with cancer. Brief summaries of the rationale for conducting studies of several agents in children are provided below. Following these summaries is a listing of phase I, phase I/II, phase II, and pilot studies of these and other agents in pediatric populations.

Current Clinical Trials of Fenretinide

December 01, 2001

Fenretinide (N-4-hydroxyphenyl-retinamide, or 4-HPR) is a semisynthetic retinoid that was initially developed as a low-dose chemopreventative agent.[1-3] Unlike other naturally occurring retinoids such as all-trans, 13-cis, and 9-cis retinoic acids, fenretinide does not induce systemic catabolism that interferes with the maintenance of effective plasma levels during long-term use. This characteristic, combined with the agent’s low toxicity and its ability to block aspects of carcinogenesis, provided the rationale for the development of fenretinide in lower doses as a chemoprevention agent for breast, prostate, and bladder cancer.