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The Place of Targeted Agents in the Treatment of Elderly Patients with Metastatic Colorectal Cancer

Department of Medical Oncology, University General Hospital of Heraklion, Voutes, PO Box 1352, 71110 Heraklion, Greece
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Academic Editor: Dirk Rades
Cancers 2015, 7(1), 439-449;
Received: 13 January 2015 / Revised: 2 March 2015 / Accepted: 6 March 2015 / Published: 13 March 2015
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Cancers and Aging)
PDF [402 KB, uploaded 13 March 2015]


Despite the high prevalence of colorectal cancer in a continuously aging population and the substantial advances in the treatment of metastatic disease during the past decade, the treatment of elderly patients with advanced, unresectable or metastatic colorectal cancer is a clearly unmet need. Since older patients are under-represented or even excluded from randomized trials, the evidence that oncologists use as guidance is weak. However, small prospective studies, pooled analyses and observational studies show that combination approaches are safe, efficacious and feasible in the geriatric population with metastatic colorectal cancer. The use of biologic agents targeting angiogenesis and the epidermal growth factor receptor, which have been shown to clearly improve outcomes in multiple prospective trials in patients with advanced colorectal cancer, is a vital component of the aforementioned combination approaches. Herein, we review all available data concerning the management of elderly patients with these agents and underscore the differences between this age subgroup and younger patients. View Full-Text
Keywords: colorectal cancer; elderly; bevacizumab; cetuximab; panitumumab; targeted colorectal cancer; elderly; bevacizumab; cetuximab; panitumumab; targeted
This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited (CC BY 4.0).

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Matikas, A.; Asimakopoulou, N.; Georgoulias, V.; Souglakos, J. The Place of Targeted Agents in the Treatment of Elderly Patients with Metastatic Colorectal Cancer. Cancers 2015, 7, 439-449.

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