Which medications in the drug class Chemotherapy agents are used in the treatment of Ovarian Cancer?

Updated: Aug 10, 2020
  • Author: Andrew E Green, MD; Chief Editor: Yukio Sonoda, MD  more...
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Answer

Chemotherapy agents

Cisplatin, carboplatin, and paclitaxel are chemotherapy agents approved for the initial treatment of ovarian cancer. Intrastrand cross-linking of DNA and inhibition of DNA precursors are among proposed mechanisms of action for cisplatin. The mechanism of action for paclitaxel is tubulin polymerization and microtubule stabilization. A study by Hetland et al found that class III beta-tubulin expression in prechemotherapy effusions is associated with poor response and shorter survival; thus, it may be a successful therapeutic target in ovarian cancer. [132]

Results from randomized studies have shown that platinum-containing regimens are superior to those that do not contain platinum. In addition, the combination of platinum and paclitaxel is superior to a regimen that does not include paclitaxel.

Cisplatin (Platinol)

Indicated in established combination therapy in patients with metastatic ovarian tumors who have already received appropriate surgical and/or radiotherapeutic procedures. It also is indicated as secondary therapy in patients with metastatic ovarian tumors refractory to standard chemotherapy who have not previously received cisplatin therapy. For cisplatin, intrastrand cross-linking of DNA and inhibition of DNA precursors are among the proposed mechanisms of action.

Carboplatin

For carboplatin, intrastrand cross-linking of DNA and inhibition of DNA precursors are among the proposed mechanisms of action.

Paclitaxel (Taxol)

Indicated as subsequent therapy for the treatment of advanced carcinoma of the ovary. As first-line therapy, paclitaxel is indicated in combination with cisplatin. The mechanism of action of paclitaxel is tubulin polymerization and microtubule stabilization.

Liposomal doxorubicin (Doxil)

Liposomal doxorubicin interferes with synthesis of nucleic acid by intercalating with DNA nucleotide pairs and topoisomerase II inhibition. Indicated for the treatment of patients with ovarian cancer whose disease has progressed or recurred after platinum-based chemotherapy.


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