Targeting HER2 expression in cancer: New drugs and new indications


  • Semir Vranić College of Medicine, QU Health, Qatar University, Doha, Qatar
  • Semir Bešlija Department of Oncology, Clinical Center of the University of Sarajevo, Sarajevo, Bosnia and Herzegovina
  • Zoran Gatalica Creighton University School of Medicine, Phoenix, Arizona, United States and Oklahoma University College of Medicine, Oklahoma City, Oklahoma, United States



HER2, targeted therapy, mutations, amplification


Functional activation of human epidermal growth factor receptor 2 (HER2) has been shown to strongly promote carcinogenesis, leading to the investigation of HER2-directed agents in cancers with HER2 genomic alterations. This has been best documented in the context of HER2 gene amplification in breast and gastric/gastroesophageal junction carcinomas for which several HER2-directed agents are available and have become a part of standard treatment regimens. Somatic HER2 gene mutations have been recently described at low frequency in a variety of human cancers and have emerged as a novel predictive biomarker for HER2-directed therapies. Preclinical data also indicate that activating HER2 mutations are potent oncogenic drivers in a manner that is analogous to HER2 amplification. HER2 mutations may clinically confer sensitivity to HER2-directed agents as recently shown in a phase II clinical trial with antibody-drug conjugate against HER2 trastuzumab deruxtecan in patients with non-squamous non-small cell lung carcinoma.

Targeting HER2 expression in cancer: New drugs and new indications


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How to Cite

Targeting HER2 expression in cancer: New drugs and new indications. Biomol Biomed [Internet]. 2021 Feb. 1 [cited 2024 Mar. 1];21(1):1-4. Available from: