Peripheral neuropathy induced by paclitaxel: Recent insights and future perspectives

Charity D. Scripture*, William D. Figg, Alex Sparreboom

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

248 Scopus citations


Paclitaxel is an antineoplastic agent derived from the bark of the western yew, Taxus brevifolia, with a broad spectrum of activity. Because paclitaxel promotes microtubule assembly, neurotoxicity is one of its side effects. Clinical use of paclitaxel has led to peripheral neuropathy and this has been demonstrated to be dependent upon the dose administered, the duration of the infusion, and the schedule of administration. Vehicles in the drug formulation, for example Cremophor in Taxol®, have been investigated for their potential to induce peripheral neuropathy. A variety of neuroprotective agents have been tested in animal and clinical studies to prevent paclitaxel neurotoxicity. Recently, novel paclitaxel formulations have been developed to minimize toxicities. This review focuses on recent advances in the etiology of paclitaxel-mediated peripheral neurotoxicity, and discusses current and ongoing strategies for amelioration of this side effect.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)165-172
Number of pages8
JournalCurrent Neuropharmacology
Issue number2
StatePublished - Apr 2006
Externally publishedYes


  • ABI-007
  • Cremophor
  • Peripheral neuropathy
  • Taxol


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