Lorlatinib is being investigated for the treatment of advanced anaplastic lymphoma kinase (ALK) positive non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC). NSCLC comprises the majority of lung cancers in the UK. Symptoms of lung cancer include a persistent cough, shortness of breath, coughing up blood, aches and pains in the chest or shoulder, loss of appetite, weight loss and fatigue. While current treatments exist for ALK-postive NSCLC, significant unmet medical need remains for more effective treatment options as treatment with current options inevitably leads to further progression of the disease over time.
Lorlatinib is administered orally in tablet form and works by acting as an inhibitor to tyrosine kinases which function as ‘on’/’off’ enzymes in cellular proteins. This prevents cancer cells from growing so can control the spread of the cells. If licensed, lorlatinib would offer an additional first-line treatment option for adult patients with ALK-positive NSCLC.
Acute lymphoblastic leukaemia (ALL) is a type of cancer affecting white blood cells, which results in overproduction of faulty cells. These cells take over the bone marrow leading to anaemia, infection, bruising and bleeding. ALL is a rare condition, usually affecting more children than adults. Lymphoblastic lymphoma (LBL) is similar to ALL, they differ in where they often occur in the body (lymph nodes and thymus gland in LBL, and blood and bone marrow in ALL), and they are both treated in the same way.