FierceBiotech - an indispensible web site (sign up for their daily news summaries) produces an annual list of most-intriguing/promising late stage cancer programs. Here's this year's edition - it's definitely worth a read.
I was struck by the diversity of approaches. The target/technology list includes:
cancer stem cells,
androgen receptor signaling,
tyrosine kinase signaling, and
The good news is that there is a broad and diverse anti-cancer effort underway. The bad news is……there is a broad and diverse anti-cancer effort underway….meaning we still don't know much about how to fight cancer effectively. From a decade ago, a few anti-cancer technologies have come (stem cells) and gone (gene therapy), and some technologies have increased validation (anti-angiogenesis) while others have fallen (immunotherapy), but the nature of the list hasn't changed a great deal.
One possible lesson from this list of candidates: anti-sense/RNAi and HDAC drug development are not currently as promising as they each were 3-5 years ago.