Molecular Mechanisms of Cardiovascular Damage Induced by Anti-HER-2 Therapies
In the last two decades, newer biological drugs have been designed in order to “target” specific proteins involved in cancer proliferation and overcome the increased risk of cardiovascular toxicity associated with “broad-spectrum” classic chemotherapeutics. Unfortunately, these proteins are also important for the maintenance of cardiovascular homeostasis. The humanized anti-ErbB2 antibody, trastuzumab, is the prototypical biological drug first introduced in antineoplastic protocols for the treatment of ErbB2+ breast cancer. Indeed, not only is this protein overexpressed in several breast cancers, but also it plays a major role in the cardiovascular system in cell growth, including myocyte growth, and inhibition of apoptosis and can modulate the oxidative damage induced by anthracyclines. Hence, patients treated with trastuzumab developed systolic dysfunction, especially when administered with or shortly after doxorubicin.
KeywordsCardiovascular toxicity Anti-ErbB2 drugs Anthracyclines Cardiovascular homeostasis Oxidative stress
CGT received speaking fees from Alere.
CGT is funded by a Federico II University/Ricerca di Ateneo grant.
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