Chemotherapy is a systemic treatment for cancer, comprising cytotoxic agents that target cancer cells. Normally, cells develop and die in an orderly and determined fashion. However, when cancer manifests itself, the cells intractably divide and proliferate. Chemotherapy drugs target these cancer cells by destroying them before they continually multiply and divide. In particular, chemotherapy interferes with or impairs the targeted molecules (e.g., DNA, proteins) during designated cellular stages, such as synthesis or mitosis. The majority of chemotherapy drugs damage or interfere with the replication of DNA and/or RNA, and are used to treat several malignancies, particularly brain tumors, lymphomas, and leukemias. Some of the chemotherapies include alkylating agents (such as cisplatin, carboplatin, cyclophosphamide, and temozolomide) to treat brain tumors, lymphomas, and leukemias; nitrosoureas (e.g., carmustine and lomustine) are indicated for the...
References and Readings
- Chabner, B. A., & Longo, D. L. (2004). Cancer chemotherapy and biotherapy: Principles and practice. Hagerstown: Lippincott, Williams & Wilkins.Google Scholar