Shelly Engfer-Triebenbach

Dr. Alice Shaw, Massachusetts General Hospital, currently global head of translational clinical oncology at Novartis Institutes for BioMedical Research (NIBR) where she leads early drug development in oncology and hematology.

Shelly Engfer-Triebenbach, an ALK+ lung cancer patient and advocate, is joined by medical oncologist Dr. Alice Shaw, Director of Thoracic Oncology at Massachusetts General Hospital. They discuss what happens after going through one–or even three–ALK+ targeted therapies.

Dr. Shaw states that having an understanding of what could be driving resistance is essential in determining the best way forward in terms of treatments. She also discusses the option of re-biopsy or taking liquid biopsies to perform molecular profiling in efforts to better understand what has caused resistance and how to find a solution that works with the specifics of your case.

Thanks to advances in technology, it’s now possible for physicians to look for circulating tumor DNA (CT DNA) using a highly sensitive assay and sequence numerous genes including the ALK gene to identify resistance-causing mutations in the tumor itself. This technology can provide valuable insight and help develop personalized treatments unique to your condition and lessen potential side effects from treatment!