Pre-messenger RNA splicing is significantly changed in cancer cells leading to the expression of cancer-specific transcripts. These transcripts have the potential to be used as cancer biomarkers and also as targets for new therapeutic approaches. In addition, the cancer-specific transcripts have the potential to alter the drug response of the cancer cells creating a chemo-resistant state. This later property of alternative splicing presents a challenge to clinicians in the design of effective therapeutic regimens. When a patient's cancer relapses it is frequently refractory to standard chemotherapies resulting in a poor clinical outcome. Therefore, understanding the mechanisms of how alternative splicing can lead to chemo-resistance is critical to the effective delivery of treatment. Here, we will discuss the impact of alternative splicing variants on drug metabolism and activation; on drug interactions with cell signaling pathways; and on cell death pathways in cancer therapeutics. In addition to the initial characterization of splicing variants, the mechanisms leading to alterations in splicing are being studied in the setting of chemo-resistance and will be discussed here. The promise of therapeutic intervention to obviate the impact of these splicing variants will significantly enhance treatment options for cancer patients.