USMLE

Paclitaxel

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Oncology Pharm
  1. Bleomycin
  2. Dactinomycin, Actinomycin D
  3. Doxorubicin, Daunorubicin
  4. Azathioprine, 6-MP
  5. Cladribine
  6. Cytarabine
  7. Busulfan
  8. Cyclophosphamide, Ifosfamide
  9. Nitrosoureas
  10. Paclitaxel
  11. Vincristine, Vinblastine
  12. Cisplatin, Carboplatin, Oxaliplatin
  13. Etoposide, Teniposide
  14. Irinotecan, Topotecan
  15. Bevacizumab
  16. Erlotinib
  17. Cetuximab, Panitumumab
  18. Imatinib, Dasatinib
  19. Rituximab
  20. Bortezomib, Carfilzomib
  21. Trastuzumab
  22. Dabrafenib, Vemurafenib
  23. Raloxifene and Tamoxifen
  24. Hydroxyurea
  25. Procarbazine

Summary

Paclitaxel and other taxanes are chemotherapeutic drugs that work by preventing breakdown of microtubules. This effect is particularly effective against rapidly dividing cells, making paclitaxel a useful tool in treating cancers. One side effect associated with microtubule inhibition is peripheral neuropathy. Other side effects seen include myelosuppression and hypersensitivity.

Key Points

  • Paclitaxel / Taxanes
    • Mechanism
      • Blocks microtubule breakdown
        • They do this by hyperstabilizing polymerized microtubules
        • Occurs during the M phase of the cell cycle
          • Prevents anaphase from occurring
            • Toxic to rapidly-dividing cells
    • Clinical Use
      • Ovarian and breast cancers
    • Adverse Effects
      • Peripheral neuropathy
      • Myelosuppression (obvious)
      • Hypersensitivity