Published online Mar 28, 2015. doi: 10.3748/wjg.v21.i12.3746
Peer-review started: October 6, 2014
First decision: October 29, 2014
Revised: November 12, 2014
Accepted: December 19, 2014
Article in press: December 22, 2014
Published online: March 28, 2015
Monoclonal antibodies against epidermal growth factor receptor (EGFR) are used in the treatment of advanced colorectal cancer. However, these agents can induce severe dermatological side effects that discourage their administration in patients with chronic dermatological disease. EGFR plays a key role in normal skin development and immunological function, and is expressed in various tissues and organs, although contrarily, it is overexpressed in psoriasis-related skin lesions. Thus, discussion is ongoing regarding the putative pathological role and therapeutic potential of this protein. We herein report on a patient with advanced colon cancer and concomitant long-standing psoriasis vulgaris who received anti-EGFR antibody monotherapy as a third-line treatment for metastatic disease. One week after the initiation of treatment, the patient’s skin lesions dramatically subsided and the improvement was sustained during therapy. Based on this case, we propose that anti-EGFR antibody therapy is not necessarily contraindicated in patients with psoriasis vulgaris. Moreover, the findings reaffirmed that EGFR is an important molecule in the pathology of psoriasis.
Core tip: Anti- epidermal growth factor receptor (EGFR) antibodies are effective in treating advanced colorectal cancer. However, anti-EGFR antibodies are not generally used in patients with concomitant chronic skin disease due to dermatological toxicities. In this case report, we present a patient with psoriasis vulgaris whose symptoms lessened during treatment with anti-EGFR antibody monotherapy for metastatic colon cancer. Based on this result, we consider that patients with concomitant skin disease should still be considered for anti-EGFR antibody therapy.