Human epidermal growth factor receptor 2 (HER2) in advanced gastric cancer: where do we stand?

Giandomenico Roviello, Giuseppe Aprile, Alberto D'Angelo, Luigi Francesco Iannone, Franco Roviello, Karol Polom, Enrico Mini, Martina Catalano

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

9 Citations (SciVal)


Gastric cancer is one of the most common malignancy worldwide. In unresectable or metastatic disease, the prognosis is poor and in generally less than a year. HER2 expression remains an important biomarker to lead the addition of trastuzumab to first-line systemic chemotherapy in unresectable or metastatic gastroesophageal adenocarcinoma. To date, a major issue is represented by resistance to trastuzumab developed during treatment, considering the not improved outcomes in this molecular subtype of gastroesophageal adenocarcinoma to other HER2 target strategies. In this review, we summarize the available data on the mechanisms underlying primary and secondary resistance to HER2-targeted therapy and current challenges in the treatment of HER2-positive advanced gastric cancer refractory to trastuzumab. Furthermore, we describe the prognostic value of new non-invasive screening methods, under development novel agents (e.g., HER2 antibody-drug conjugates and bispecific antibodies) and strategies with antitumor activity in early studies.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)765-779
Number of pages15
JournalGastric cancer
Issue number4
Early online date19 Mar 2021
Publication statusPublished - 31 Jul 2021


  • HER2
  • Pertuzumab
  • Trastuzumab

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Oncology
  • Gastroenterology
  • Cancer Research


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