Targeted cancer therapy

Every tumor in each patient is unique as it develops through different genetic changes. Some patients may only insufficiently respond to standard therapies. Thanks to state-of-the-art and highly specific diagnostic capabilities, we are able to exactly characterize tumor diseases. For this reason, we not only resort to conventional therapies (as for example radio- and chemotherapy), in fact we endeavor to find for each patient and for each tumor the most appropriate therapy. This is only possible after exact molecular-genetic tumor diagnostics were performed. These diagnostic results give us comprehensive information about tumor-genetic/molecular encryptions, which then can be cracked precisely with targeted drugs. They attack tumor cells at central places in their metabolic processes which are different from healthy cells (biomarkers).

Therefore, healthy cells remain largely unaffected. It can be said that a targeted cancer therapy is gentler than conventional procedures.

A targeted cancer therapy is a key component to our personalized form of treatment.

When considering effective medication, we not only acknowledge targeted drugs that have been already approved, but also those that are still in clinical development. We give our patients the opportunity to inform themselves about suitable studies and the possibility to participate in that kind of studies.

Targeted therapies include:

  • Antihormonal therapy

The growth of some types of cancer cells is dependent on hormones. By administering substances, which either inhibit the building of the required hormones or prevent an effect on the cancer cells, the growth of cancer cells can be stopped.

  • Signal transduction inhibitors

Cell division is usually strictly controlled through external signals to avoid uncontrolled growth, but in cancer cells this signal transduction is often defective, hence they continuously multiply. With this method we can interfere with new substances, which inhibit the activation of growth-inducing factors in the environment of the cell.

  • Angiogenesis inhibitors

By inhibiting blood vessel formation (medically angiogenesis) the supply of food for the tumor can be stopped. Here, for example, monoclonal antibodies (see Monoclonal antibodies) are used.

  • Monoclonal antibodies

Monoclonal antibodies are artificially produced antibodies. They are used to mark typical components on the surface of the tumor cell. This is particularly helpful in the diagnostics of cancer types, but they are also used for treatment. For several years now it is possible to synthesize specific antibodies against certain tumor surface structures. These antibodies are particularly effective in combination with chemo- or radiotherapy without increasing the side effects of such treatment.

  • Immune therapy

Our healthy immune system destroys substances and organisms that may damage our body very reliably. We can take advantage of your own cancer treatment mechanism. Immune therapy can activate and mobilize the body’s own immune system in order to detect and destroy tumor cells. There are also medications available, which have so-called immune-modulating effects. This means that reproduction and activation of immune cells is stimulated or that the release of messenger substances in the immune system is induced.