Authors: Joel Fossouo-Tagne, Thilani H. Dias, Mohitosh Biswas, David Newby, Karen P. Kerr and Elizabeth A. Milward
Pharmacogenomics is a rapidly expanding area of clinical practice and becoming particularly important in oncology. Both somatic (tumour) and germline (patient) genetic variations influence the response of an individual to cancer treatments. Understanding these variations has the potential to make cancer therapies safer and more effective. Individual sensitivity to toxicities induced by oncology drugs can be further increased by drug-drug interactions as cancer patients are often exposed to multiple drug regimens. Potential life-threatening adverse drug reactions to anticancer drugs may be avoided by considering pharmacogenomics. This review will give an introductory overview of oncology pharmacogenomics and the importance of considering both somatic and germline genomes for optimizing the efficacy and safety of various antineoplastic therapies routinely used in clinical practice. In addition, it will consider the importance of taking into account multiple gene and drug interactions to inform treatment options in cancer patients experiencing adverse or suboptimal responses to co-prescribed drugs.
Keywords: Pharmacogenomics, oncology, drug-gene interaction, drug-drug interactions