Cyclin-dependent kinase 4/6 inhibitors: What have we learnt across studies, therapy situations and substances

Malgorzata Banys-Paluchowski*, Natalia Krawczyk, Peter Paluchowski

*Corresponding author for this work
8 Citations (Scopus)


Purpose of reviewCyclin-dependent kinases (CDK) are key regulatory enzymes that control cell cycle and cell division. In the recent years, new therapeutic options selectively targeting CDK 4 and 6 have shown promising clinical activity in several solid tumors. Since 2015, three CDK 4/6 inhibitors have been approved for treatment of hormone receptor-positive HER2-negative metastatic breast cancer: palbociclib, ribociclib and abemaciclib. These drugs share a common mechanism of action and have been evaluated in studies with a similar design. The following review gives a clinical overview of the CDK 4/6 inhibitors in breast cancer therapy and highlight current study data with regard to their antitumor efficacy and toxicities.Recent findingsIn clinical trials in the first-line and later-line setting, palbociclib, ribociclib and abemaciclib in combination with endocrine therapy significantly prolonged progression-free survival. The most common adverse events during treatment with CDK 4/6 inhibitors are neutropenia, fatigue and gastrointestinal symptoms.SummaryCDK 4/6 inhibitors represent a valuable treatment option for patients with metastatic hormone receptor-positive HER2-negative breast cancer. Although the clinical efficacy of the three agents seems similar, their toxicity profiles differ. Therefore, the choice of a CKD 4/6 inhibitor depends on patient's characteristics and individual preferences.Video abstractIn the video, the author describes the content of the review and present the main topics discussed in the article (

Original languageEnglish
JournalCurrent Opinion in Obstetrics and Gynecology
Issue number1
Pages (from-to)56-66
Number of pages11
Publication statusPublished - 01.02.2019

Research Areas and Centers

  • Research Area: Luebeck Integrated Oncology Network (LION)
  • Centers: University Cancer Center Schleswig-Holstein (UCCSH)


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