Brand name: Piqray
Chemical name: Alpelisib
Class: PI3K inhibitor
How it works: The PI3K pathway helps all cells — both healthy and cancer cells — get the energy they need. When this pathway is overactivated because of a mutation in the PIK3CA gene, it can allow cancer cells to survive and grow. PI3K inhibitors block this pathway, with the goal of killing cancer cells.
Uses: Piqray is used in combination with Faslodex (chemical name: fulvestrant) to treat metastatic and advanced-stage, hormone-receptor-positive, HER2-negative breast cancer with a PIK3CA mutation that has grown after hormonal therapy treatment in postmenopausal women and men.
How it’s given: Piqray is a pill taken by mouth.
- high blood sugar levels
- high creatinine levels, which can mean kidney problems
- low white blood cell counts
- mouth sores
- hair loss
- loss of appetite
- severe skin reactions
Read more about Piqray.
- Piqray (alpelisib) prescribing information. Novartis Pharmaceuticals Corporation, East Hanover, New Jersey. 2019. Available at: https://www.pharma.us.novartis.com/sites/www.pharma.us.novartis.com/files/piqray.pdf (PDF)