Cutaneous toxicity as a predictive biomarker for clinical outcome in patients receiving anticancer therapy

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Abstract

The relationship between treatment outcome and cutaneous toxicity induced by anticancer therapy has gained attention in the past decade. In this article, we have provided an overview of the 3 main classes of anticancer agents—specifically, molecularly targeted kinase inhibitors, immune checkpoint inhibitors, and cytotoxic chemotherapeutics—and described the data evaluating the association between cutaneous toxicity induced by these agents and survival benefit. Although preliminary studies are promising with regard to the potential role of cutaneous toxicities as a surrogate biomarker of efficacy of treatment, larger prospective studies are needed to confirm this relationship. Dermatologists have a unique opportunity to collaborate with oncologists in the multidisciplinary treatment paradigm by helping to identify and manage these dermatologic events in patients with cancer. A heightened awareness of these toxicities is critical, as it can potentially allow recognition of the efficacy of anticancer therapy and may influence treatment decisions and patient outcomes.

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