Systemic therapy and targeted agents in advanced esophageal cancer

Mark A. Lewis, Harry H. Yoon

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter


This chapter summarizes recent progress in the treatment of patients with advanced adenocarcinoma of the esophageal and gastroesophageal junction, with a focus on the clinical development of systemic targeted agents. To date, monoclonal antibodies targeting the human epidermal growth factor receptor (HER) 2 (trastuzumab) and tumor-related angiogenesis (ramucirumab) have been shown to improve overall survival in Phase 3 trials of esophagogastric adenocarcinoma, whereas a lack of meaningful efficacy has been demonstrated by epidermal growth factor receptor (EGFR)-targeted monoclonal antibodies (cetuximab, panitumumab) and small molecule inhibitors (gefitinib). Benefit from the dual EGFR/HER2-targeted tyrosine kinase inhibitor, lapatinib, appears to be limited, although responsive subpopulations may be identified. Success in further development of anti-cancer therapies in advanced disease will likely rely on focusing patient enrollment on those with actionable molecular targets.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationEsophageal Cancer and Barrett's Esophagus
Number of pages14
ISBN (Electronic)9781118655153
ISBN (Print)9781118655207
StatePublished - Dec 12 2015


  • EGFR
  • Esophageal adenocarcinoma
  • Esophageal cancer
  • Gastroesophageal junction adenocarcinoma
  • Gastroesophageal junction cancer
  • HER2
  • Ramucirumab
  • Targeted therapy
  • Trastuzumab

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Medicine(all)


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