Research Outline

Colorectal cancer newest noninvasive treatments


To learn about new and emerging noninvasive colorectal cancer treatments.

Early Findings

  • New noninvasive treatments for colorectal cancer are being developed that include genomic data, derived from a genomic analysis performed on the FFPE primary tumor and whole blood that is used to provide "personalized treatment for a KRAS mutant colorectal cancer."
  • Through genomic analysis, researchers found nine mutations that appear to be drivers for the majority of colorectal cancer tumors.
  • One noninvasive combination treatment for colorectal cancer, still in clinical trials, involves daily doses of oral trametinib plus an intravenous dose of zoledronate once every 4 weeks.
  • A 53-year-old man diagnosed with colorectal adenocarcinoma is the patient discussed in this Science Advances article.
  • His treatment involved a 2 mg daily dose of oral trametinib combined with a 4 mg dose of zoledronate delivered intravenously once every four weeks.
  • After eight weeks of this drug therapy, the patient's targeted lesions had decreased by 45%. Further, testing after more treatment and the reintroduction of oral trametinib showed a slight increase in the size of the target lesions, but they were still 39% below the baseline size established at the start of treatment. Additionally, no new lesions formed during this time.
  • The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center has developed targeted therapies to treat certain types of colon cancer. Innovative new drugs researchers there have developed "stop the growth of cancer cells by interfering with certain proteins and receptors or blood vessels that supply the tumor with what it needs to grow, survive and spread."
  • New drugs are being developed to treat colorectal cancer by targeting specific biomarkers present in some tumors and patients but not others.
  • A list of drugs currently approved by the FDA for the treatment of colon cancer and rectal cancer is available here.
Summary of our findings:
  • Our initial hour of research was able to find information related to the development of noninvasive therapies for the treatment of colorectal cancer. We found many instances of treatments in clinical trials but none that have been released recently.
  • We did not have time in our first hour to look into these trials to see which ones were stage 3 or stage 4 to see what treatments will be available soon.