NCI Dictionary of Cancer Terms

  • Resize font
  • Print
  • Email
  • Facebook
  • Twitter
  • Google+
  • Pinterest

The NCI Dictionary of Cancer Terms features 7,777 terms related to cancer and medicine.

Browse the dictionary by selecting a letter of the alphabet or by entering a cancer-related word or phrase in the search box.

41 results found for: Z
zafirlukast
(zuh-FER-loo-kast)
A drug used to prevent and treat symptoms of asthma. It blocks substances that cause inflammation in the lungs. It is a type of antiasthmatic agent and a leukotriene receptor antagonist. Also called Accolate.
Zaltrap
(ZAL-trap)
A drug used with other drugs to treat colorectal cancer that has spread to other parts of the body and has not gotten better with chemotherapy. It is also being studied in the treatment of other types of cancer. Zaltrap blocks the action of a protein called vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF) and may prevent the growth of new blood vessels that tumors need to grow. It is a type of antiangiogenesis agent. Also called vascular endothelial growth factor trap, VEGF Trap, and ziv-aflibercept.
zanamivir
(zuh-NA-mih-veer)
A drug used to prevent and to treat influenza virus infections. It blocks the release of the virus from infected cells. It is a type of antiviral agent. Also called Relenza.
Zarnestra
(zar-NESS-truh)
A substance that is being studied in the treatment of acute myeloid leukemia (AML) and other types of cancer. It belongs to the family of drugs called farnesyltransferase inhibitors. Also called R115777 and tipifarnib.
Zarxio
(ZAR-zee-oh)
A colony-stimulating factor that stimulates the production of neutrophils (a type of white blood cell). It is a cytokine that is a type of hematopoietic (blood-forming) agent. Also called filgrastim, G-CSF, and granulocyte colony-stimulating factor.
ZD0473
A substance that is being studied in the treatment of cancer. It belongs to the family of drugs called platinum analogs.
ZD1839
A drug that is used to treat certain types of non-small cell lung cancer and is being studied in the treatment of other types of cancer. It is a type of epidermal growth factor receptor (EGFR) tyrosine kinase inhibitor. Also called gefitinib and Iressa.
ZD4054
A substance that is being studied in the treatment of prostate cancer. It belongs to the family of drugs called endothelin-receptor antagonists.
ZD6126
A substance that has been studied in the treatment of several types of cancer. ZD6126 destroys blood vessels in tumors and may prevent the growth of new blood vessels that tumors need to grow. It is a type of vascular targeting agent and a type of antiangiogenesis agent.
ZD6474
A drug used to treat medullary thyroid cancer that has spread to other parts of the body and cannot be treated by surgery. It is also being studied in the treatment of other types of cancer. ZD6474 prevents the growth of new blood vessels that tumors need to grow. It also blocks enzymes needed for cell growth and may kill cancer cells. It is a type of antiangiogenesis agent and a type of tyrosine kinase inhibitor. Also called Caprelsa and vandetanib.
ZDX
A drug used to treat prostate cancer and to relieve the symptoms of advanced breast cancer. It is also used to treat problems with the endometrium (lining of the uterus). ZDX keeps the body from making the hormones luteinizing hormone-releasing hormone (LHRH) and luteinizing hormone (LH). This causes the testicles to stop making testosterone (a male hormone) in men, and the ovaries to stop making estradiol (a form of the hormone estrogen) in women. ZDX may stop the growth of cancer cells that need testosterone or estrogen to grow. It is a type of LHRH agonist. Also called goserelin acetate and Zoladex.
Zelboraf
(ZEL-boh-raf)
A drug used to treat advanced melanoma that has a mutated (changed) form of a cell protein called BRAF. It is also being studied in the treatment of other types of cancer. Zelboraf blocks this mutated protein, which may stop the growth of cancer cells. It is a type of kinase inhibitor and a type of targeted therapy agent. Also called BRAF (V600E) kinase inhibitor RO5185426, PLX4032, RG7204, and vemurafenib.
Zenapax
(ZEH-nuh-pax)
A drug used to keep the body from rejecting kidney transplants. It is also being studied in the treatment of some types of cancer and other conditions. Zenapax binds to receptors for a protein called interleukin-2 (IL-2), which are found on some types of immune cells and cancer cells. This may help suppress the body’s immune response and it may help kill cancer cells. Zenapax is a type of monoclonal antibody. Also called dacliximab and daclizumab.
Zestril
(ZEH-stril)
A drug used to treat high blood pressure and certain heart conditions. It is also being studied in the prevention and treatment of side effects caused by some anticancer drugs. It blocks certain enzymes that cause blood vessels to constrict (narrow). It is a type of angiotensin-converting enzyme (ACE) inhibitor. Also called lisinopril and Prinivil.
Zevalin
(ZEH-vuh-lin)
A monoclonal antibody that is used to treat certain types of B-cell non-Hodgkin lymphoma and is being studied in the treatment and detection of other types of B-cell tumors. Monoclonal antibodies are made in the laboratory and can locate and bind to substances in the body, including cancer cells. Ibritumomab binds to the protein called CD20, which is found on B cells. It is linked to the compound tiuxetan. This allows certain radioisotopes to be attached before it is given to a patient. It is a type of monoclonal antibody-chelator conjugate. Also called ibritumomab tiuxetan.
Zheng
(jung)
In traditional Chinese medicine, a way of diagnosing disease based on observing a set of signs and symptoms. A practitioner checks Zheng by looking at the patient; asking questions; feeling the pulse, organs, and tissues; listening to body sounds; and smelling the body.
zibotentan
(zy-boh-TEN-tan)
A substance being studied in the treatment of some types of cancer. Zibotentan may block cancer cell growth. It is a type of endothelin-A receptor antagonist.
ziconotide
(zih-KAH-noh-tide)
A drug used in the treatment of chronic pain. Also called Prialt and SNX 111.
zidovudine
(zy-DOH-vyoo-DEEN)
A drug that inhibits the human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) that causes AIDS. It is a type of systemic antiviral. Also called AZT.
zileuton
(zy-LOO-tin)
A substance that is used to prevent asthma symptoms and that is being studied in the prevention of lung cancer. It belongs to the family of drugs called leukotriene blockers.
zinc oxide
(zink OK-side)
A compound that may enhance immune function, especially when administered by inhalation.
zinc sulfate
(zink SUL-fayt)
A substance required for cell growth and tissue repair. It is being studied as a way to prevent or decrease mucositis caused by radiation therapy.
Zinecard
(ZIH-neh-kard)
A drug used to reduce heart damage in women given doxorubicin for breast cancer that has spread. It is also being studied in the treatment of cancer. Zinecard contains the active ingredient dexrazoxane. It is a type of cardioprotective agent, a type of chemoprotective agent, and a type of topoisomerase inhibitor.
ziv-aflibercept
(ziv-a-FLIH-ber-sept)
A drug used with other drugs to treat colorectal cancer that has spread to other parts of the body and has not gotten better with chemotherapy. It is also being studied in the treatment of other types of cancer. Ziv-aflibercept blocks the action of a protein called vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF) and may prevent the growth of new blood vessels that tumors need to grow. It is a type of antiangiogenesis agent. Also called vascular endothelial growth factor trap, VEGF Trap, and Zaltrap.
Zocor
(ZOH-kor)
A drug used to lower the amount of cholesterol and other harmful substances in the blood, such as triglycerides. It is also being studied in the treatment of cancer and other conditions. Zocor blocks an enzyme that helps make cholesterol in the body. It is a type of HMG-CoA reductase inhibitor and a type of statin. Also called simvastatin.
Zofran
(ZOH-fran)
A drug used to prevent nausea and vomiting caused by chemotherapy and radiation therapy. It is also used to prevent nausea and vomiting after surgery. Zofran blocks the action of the chemical serotonin, which binds to certain nerves and may trigger nausea and vomiting. Blocking serotonin may help lessen nausea and vomiting. It is a type of serotonin receptor antagonist and a type of antiemetic. Also called ondansetron hydrochloride.
Zoladex
(ZOLE-uh-dex)
A drug used to treat prostate cancer and to relieve the symptoms of advanced breast cancer. It is also used to treat problems with the endometrium (lining of the uterus). Zoladex keeps the body from making the hormones luteinizing hormone-releasing hormone (LHRH) and luteinizing hormone (LH). This causes the testicles to stop making testosterone (a male hormone) in men, and the ovaries to stop making estradiol (a form of the hormone estrogen) in women. Zoladex may stop the growth of cancer cells that need testosterone or estrogen to grow. It is a type of LHRH agonist. Also called goserelin acetate and ZDX.
zoledronate
(zoh-LEH-droh-nayt)
A drug used to treat patients with hypercalcemia (high blood levels of calcium) caused by cancer. It is also used together with other drugs to treat multiple myeloma and to prevent bone fractures and reduce bone pain in people who have cancer that has spread to the bone. It is a type of bisphosphonate. Also called zoledronic acid and Zometa.
zoledronic acid
(ZOH-leh-DRAH-nik A-sid)
A drug used to treat patients with hypercalcemia (high blood levels of calcium) caused by cancer. It is also used together with other drugs to treat multiple myeloma and to prevent bone fractures and reduce bone pain in people who have cancer that has spread to the bone. It is a type of bisphosphonate. Also called zoledronate and Zometa.
Zolinza
(zoh-LIN-zah)
A drug that is used to treat cutaneous T-cell lymphoma that does not get better, gets worse, or comes back during or after treatment with other drugs. It is also being studied in the treatment of other types of cancer. Zolinza is a type of histone deacetylase inhibitor. Also called SAHA, suberoylanilide hydroxamic acid, and vorinostat.
Zollinger-Ellison syndrome
(ZOLE-lin-jer-EH-lih-sun SIN-drome)
A disorder in which tumors of the pancreatic islet cells produce large amounts of gastrin (a hormone), leading to excess acid in the stomach and, possibly, a peptic ulcer (ulcer of the stomach or the upper part of the small intestine).
Zoloft
(ZOH-loft)
A drug used to treat depression. It is a type of selective serotonin reuptake inhibitor (SSRI). Also called sertraline.
zolpidem
(zole-PIH-dem)
A drug used to treat insomnia (inability to sleep), and anxiety. It is a type of imidazopyridine (sedative hypnotic). Also called Ambien.
Zometa
(ZOH-meh-tuh)
A drug used to treat patients with hypercalcemia (high blood levels of calcium) caused by cancer. It is also used together with other drugs to treat multiple myeloma and to prevent bone fractures and reduce bone pain in people who have cancer that has spread to the bone. It is a type of bisphosphonate. Also called zoledronate and zoledronic acid.
zosuquidar trihydrochloride
(ZOH-soo-KWIH-dar try-HY-droh-KLOR-ide)
A substance being studied in the treatment of cancer. Zosuquidar trihydrochloride may help kill cancer cells that are resistant to anticancer drugs. Also called LY335979.
Zyban
(ZY-ban)
A drug used to treat depression and certain other disorders. It is also used to help people stop smoking. Zyban increases the levels of the chemicals dopamine, serotonin, and norepinephrine in the brain. This helps improve mood and can lessen cravings for nicotine. It is a type of antidepressant and a type of nicotine receptor antagonist. Also called bupropion hydrochloride and Wellbutrin.
Zydelig
(zy-DEH-lig)
A drug used with rituximab to treat chronic lymphocytic leukemia (CLL) that has come back. It is also used to treat follicular B-cell non-Hodgkin lymphoma (NHL) and small lymphocytic lymphoma (SLL) that have come back after treatment with other anticancer therapy. It is also being studied in the treatment of other types of cancer. Zydelig blocks certain proteins, which may help keep cancer cells from growing and may kill them. It is a type of kinase inhibitor. Also called idelalisib.
Zykadia
(zy-KAY-dee-uh)
A drug used to treat non-small cell lung cancer that has spread to other parts of the body and has a mutated (changed) form of a gene called anaplastic lymphoma kinase (ALK). It is used in patients whose cancer has gotten worse after treatment with or who cannot receive certain anticancer drugs. Zykadia blocks the protein made by the mutated ALK gene. Blocking this protein may stop the growth and spread of cancer cells. Zykadia is a type of tyrosine kinase inhibitor. Also called ceritinib.
Zyprexa
(zy-PREK-suh)
A drug used to treat certain mental disorders. It is also being studied in the treatment of nausea and vomiting caused by some cancer treatments. It is a type of antipsychotic and a type of monoamine antagonist. Also called olanzapine and Zyprexa Zydis.
Zyprexa Zydis
(zy-PREK-suh ZY-dis)
A drug used to treat certain mental disorders. It is also being studied in the treatment of nausea and vomiting caused by some cancer treatments. It is a type of antipsychotic and a type of monoamine antagonist. Also called olanzapine and Zyprexa.
Zytiga
(zy-TEE-guh)
A drug used with prednisone to treat prostate cancer that has spread to other parts of the body and has not gotten better with other hormone therapy. It is also being studied in the treatment of other types of cancer. Zytiga lowers the amount of androgens (male hormones), such as testosterone, made by the body. This may stop the growth of cancer cells that need androgens to grow. Zytiga is a type of antiandrogen. Also called abiraterone acetate.