Kidney cancer therapies may improve quality of life

Kidney cancer drugs in development could improve patients' quality of life and allow more effective treatment, according to Robert Hawkins of Manchester University.

Change to kidney cancer drugs
Change to kidney cancer drugs

Drugs such as sunitinib have represented a 'step change' in kidney cancer treatment in the past few years, but have a number of side-effects, Professor Hawkins said.

These can be significant given that people take sunitinib for a year on average, but can be on the drug indefinitely, he said.

Professor Hawkins told GP newspaper that data on the developmental drug pazopanib suggested it had fewer 'off-target' effects than sunitinib.

'Pazopanib is much more specific which potentially leads to fewer side-effects,' he said.

'There are two likely benefits. One is that it will lead to a better quality of life. Also, patients may tolerate the treatment at a fuller dose for longer.'

He said patients often could not tolerate the maximum dose of sunitinib.

Promising data on regorafenib, another agent targeting the same receptor, were also presented at the conference.

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