Significant Advancement in Managing Erlotinib Side Effects by GW Researchers

May 2, 2024


We are thrilled to announce a remarkable breakthrough achieved by the esteemed Department of Biochemistry and Molecular Medicine at The George Washington University School of Medicine and Health Sciences. Their groundbreaking research has made a significant advancement in the management of dermatological side effects associated with Erlotinib, a key anti-tumorigenic agent used in treating various cancers.

This development, detailed in a recent study “Topical Application of Aprepitant Inhibits Erlotinib-induced Facial Dermatitis/Hair Loss” in the Journal of Dermatology and Skin Science led by Dr. William Weglicki, Iu Tong Mak, jay kramer, Joanna Chmielinska, examined the adverse skin effects of Erlotinib with a primary focus on its propensity to trigger severe facial rash and hair loss.

Dr. Weglicki and the team uncovered that these challenging side effects are mediated by substance P, a neuropeptide. By implementing the targeted topical application of Aprepitant, a substance known to effectively block substance P receptor, a remarkable reduction of up to 70% in these detrimental side effects can be achieved as demonstrated in the rat models.

Read More

This transformative discovery marks a pivotal milestone in enhancing the quality of life for patients undergoing cancer treatment by effectively addressing one of Erlotinib therapy’s most distressing side effects. Our pride in this breakthrough is immense, as it heralds a new chapter in making cancer therapy more tolerable for patients.