Research Summary: Biomarkers for targeted lung cancer chemoprevention

Grant Recipient: Dr. Meredith A. Tennis
Title of Project: Biomarkers for targeted lung cancer chemoprevention
Sponsoring Institution:
University of Colorado Denver, Denver, CO

Lung cancer remains the leading cause of cancer death in the world for both men and women. Non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC) accounts for around 90% of lung cancer cases, with nearly 75% of cases diagnosed with advanced, inoperable, or metastatic disease. Prevention studies have largely been ineffective. However, a chemoprevention trial using the oral prostacyclin analogue iloprost demonstrated improvement in cigarette smoking-induced damage in former smokers. An ongoing trial is also investigating lung cancer chemoprevention with pioglitazone, a PPAR gamma agonist (like iloprost), which has been associated with decreased lung cancer risk in diabetics. We propose to investigate markers in these clinical studies that will allow physicians to target patients who are more likely to respond to lung cancer chemoprevention. These markers will help to prevent unnecessary treatment of patients who are unlikely to respond to the selected agents. We will also investigate markers that will indicate that the chemoprevention agent is active in a patient, potentially eliminating the need for invasive tests to verify clinical response. Data from this project will improve future clinical trials using iloprost and pioglitazone and support personalized lung cancer chemoprevention.