Primary Antineoplastic Drugs

on 16.3.09 with 0 comments

You should at least know the general class of a chemotherapeutic agent, you don’t need to memorize the mechanisms of action.

Alkylating Agents: include Nitrogen mustard derivatives

Antimetabolites: (massive side effects; loss of hair, loss of weight)

Methotrexate (MTX) – not only an anti cancer drug (interferes with metabolism of cancer cells) but suppresses immune system, so is given in autoimmune disease. Low doses still pose a problem, especially when treating dental pain

Fluorouracil (5-FU)


Doxorubicin (Adriamycin) is the only one consistently used

Hormonal Agents:

Tamoxifen – acts on the estrogen receptor of the breast

Flutamine – acts on the prostate

Prednisone – not a hormone, the hormone circulating in the body is hydrocortisone, from the adrenal cortex.. Prednisone has immunosuppressant activities and is widely used.

Plant Alkaloids: very powerful agents


Taxol (paclitaxel) – derived from special tree bark

Category: Medical Subject Notes , Pharmacology Notes



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