About this Research Topic
With the approval of many targeted ‘precision medicines’ for common malignancies such as breast, colorectal, and lung cancer, as well as lymphoma and leukemia, patients are now being tested for aberrations in specific molecular targets with the intent to direct treatment to patients that will obtain a predicted therapeutic benefit. However, even in selected patients, therapeutic resistance remains a predictable challenge. While mutations in the target itself may be a cause of resistance, there are many other contexts in which the target of a clinically effective therapy is known, and mutations of the target itself do not appear to play a role in the development of resistance. The multidimensionality of tumors, including tumor heterogeneity, epigenetic modifications, microenvironment and host factors are likely contributors to compensatory pathways that underlie the emergence of resistance.
New translational research approaches are contributing towards understanding mechanisms of resistance using patient biopsies obtained during treatment. This multidisciplinary research will provide insight into potential escape mechanisms, and requires the participation of patients, clinicians, interventional radiologists, pathologists, and basic researchers. The purpose of this volume is to create a comprehensive overview of the multidimensional nature of drug resistance, as demonstrated using integrated approaches and recent advances in genomics, RNomics and proteomics. We encourage our colleagues to contribute their findings and perspectives on therapeutic resistance, from in vitro models and mechanistic pathways to translational and clinical research, with a particular focus on targeted therapies.
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