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Targeted treatments in colorectal cancer: state of the art and future perspectives
  1. Dirk Arnold,
  2. Thomas Seufferlein
  1. Department of Internal Medicine IV and Department of Internal Medicine I, Martin-Luther University Halle-Wittenberg, Halle (Saale), Germany
  1. Correspondence to Dr Thomas Seufferlein, Department of Internal Medicine I, Martin-Luther-University Halle-Wittenberg, Ernst-Grube-Strasse 40, D-06120 Halle (Saale), Germany; thomas.seufferlein{at}


Targeted treatments have generated a lot of hope and hype in the treatment of gastrointestinal tumours. Indeed, the introduction of targeted treatments particularly for colorectal cancer has resulted in substantial improvements in tumour response and progression-free survival of patients. However, it is not fully understood how these agents act in patients, and the preclinical models are not appropriate to predict clinical efficacy. Here the current state of targeted treatments in colorectal cancer is reviewed, focusing on antiepidermal growth factor receptor (EGFR) and antiangiogenic strategies, describing how these agents fit into the therapeutic algorithm of this disease and discussing current understanding of the mechanism of action, biomarkers as well as future therapeutic strategies targeting multiple signalling pathways in colorectal cancer.

  • Antiangiogenic agents
  • colorectal cancer
  • EGFR
  • targeted treatments

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  • Competing interests None.

  • Provenance and peer review Commissioned; externally peer reviewed