Breast Cancer News
In this section, access cutting-edge metastatic breast cancer news on treatment updates, emerging therapies, study results and other medical and quality-of-life issues important to you.
Researchers looked at two past studies on how well the chemotherapy medicines gemcitabine (Gemzar) and capecitabine (Xeloda) work when each one is paired with another chemotherapy medicine called docetaxel (Taxotere). They found that the two combinations worked similarly well, but people who took the capecitabine-docetaxel combo were more likely to stop their therapy because of side effects.
A small, stage I/II study found that giving the anti-cancer medicines neratinib and capecitabine at the same time may help people with HER2-positive metastatic breast cancer that is no longer responding to standard treatment.
Pfizer, a company that makes and sells medicine, announced Feb. 3 that the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) granted accelerated approval of its anticancer medicine, palbociclib (Ibrance) – in combination with letrozole (Femara) – for postmenopausal women with estrogen receptor-positive, HER2-negative metastatic breast cancer.
Highlights from the annual San Antonio Breast Cancer Symposium held December 9-13, 2014 including presentation of results from a new survey conducted by Living Beyond Breast Cancer on the psychosocial needs of women with triple-negative breast cancer.
After looking at information from seven studies involving T-DM1 (Kadcyla), researchers found that severe side effects were uncommon. If they did occur, they were usually manageable.
The American Society of Clinical Oncology, ASCO, released a new treatment guideline for HER2-negative breast cancer that has spread from the breast to nearby areas or distant parts of the body.
Final results of the phase III TH3RESA trial confirm that the medicine T-DM1 extends progression-free survival, PFS, in people who have HER2-positive metastatic breast cancer that no longer responds well to first-line treatments, such as trastuzumab. PFS is the time from the start of treatment until the disease grows or spreads.
Early results of this study were presented at the European Cancer Congress, in Amsterdam, in the fall of 2013.
Final results from the CLEOPATRA trial were presented at the European Society for Medical Oncology (ESMO) 2014 Congress in Madrid at the end of September. They were also later published in the New England Journal of Medicine, in February 2015. The results show the combination of trastuzumab and pertuzumab, along with chemotherapy, lengthened the lives of women with HER2-positive metastatic breast cancer by a median 15.7 months. The increase is being called unprecedented.
New findings may pave the way for people with stage IV breast cancer in the bones to receive bone-strengthening treatment less often. These results could mean decreased risk of side effects.
To help doctors recommend treatment options based on research evidence and expert consensus, the American Society of Clinical Oncology released its first guidelines on treating metastatic HER2-positive breast cancer.
ASCO issued two clinical practice guidelines for this breast cancer type. One advises on systemic (whole body) therapies for HER2-positive breast cancer that has advanced outside of the breast, other than to the brain. The other recommends specifics on treating brain metastases.