Horm Metab Res 2020; 52(01): 7
DOI: 10.1055/a-1085-3562
© Georg Thieme Verlag KG Stuttgart · New York

Medical Treatment of Pituitary Adenomas: A Celebration of Endocrinology (and Oncology)!

Constantine A. Stratakis
1  Medical Genetics, Pediatrics, Pediatric Endocrinology, Bethesda, USA
› Author Affiliations
Further Information

Publication History

Publication Date:
16 January 2020 (online)

Not many people today realize that pituitary tumors were among the first neoplasms to be treated medically in all of oncology: the observation that an ergot alkaloid (2-Br-ergocryptine, bromocriptine) may treat prolactin-producing tumors, first made in rodents, dates from the mid-1970’s [1]. At the time, very few neoplasms could be treated medically; it was only a decade after the discovery of the first chemotherapy for any cancer: the use of methotrexate for choriocarcinoma [2].

There is therefore no better way to celebrate our anniversary than featuring in this issue a review by Maria Fleseriu and her colleagues on the medical treatment of pituitary adenomas [3]. This extensive article covers all recent updates on the use of a variety of pharmacological approaches to the treatment of pituitary adenomas and/or their hormonal consequences from the use of dopaminergic agonists and somatostatin receptor ligands to steroidogenesis inhibitors and glucocorticoid receptor antagonists in Cushing syndrome due to corticotropin-producing adenomas.

The article follows a number of recent articles in our journal on the treatment and genetics of pituitary tumors; some are listed here as examples [4] [5] [6] [7].

What an amazing progress in the field! “Quam celerrime ad astra” (“speedily to the stars”) is what comes to mind when one talks about medical treatment of pituitary tumors: we are not far from the day that molecularly targeted therapies will be used for one of the most common neoplasms of endocrine oncology…