Published: Wed, June 06, 2018
Medicine | By Earnest Bishop

Breast cancer: Test means fewer women will need chemo

Breast cancer: Test means fewer women will need chemo

Judy Perkins, 49, had been given three months to live, but two years later there is no sign of cancer in her body.

The findings apply to about 60,000 women a year in the United States, according to Dr Joseph A Sparano of Montefiore Medical Center in NY, the leader of the study.

This is the largest study ever done on breast cancer treatment.

"Until now, we've been able to recommend treatment for women with these cancers at high and low risk of recurrence, but women at intermediate risk have been uncertain about the appropriate strategy to take", study co-author Jeffrey Abrams, associate director of the National Cancer Institute's Cancer Therapy Evaluation Program, which supported the trial, said in the statement.

Many oncologists are expected to follow the study's findings and allow women with stage I or stage II HER2-negative breast cancer to avoid the toxicity and side effects of chemotherapy. Today, she said, she has a "few spots" in her left lung that Rosenberg believes may be scar tissue.

Around two thirds of women diagnosed with breast cancer survive the disease, according to Cancer Research UK. To conduct the study, women in the intermediate groups were either prescribed chemotherapy or given treatment absent of the use of chemotherapy. Once collected, the cells are armed with cancer-recognizing molecules so that when they are reintroduced into the patient's body they can home in on the tumors and kill them off.

That's why it's great news to hear that doctors in the United States have just made an fantastic scientific breakthrough through, curing a woman who was in the advanced stages of the disease.

Immunotherapy trains a patient's own immune cells to recognise and fight cancer.

How does the study fit into the debate over "de-escalating" treatment of early-stage breast cancer?

As part of the TAILORx study, women were given a 21-gene test from Genomic Health called Oncotype DX.

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Mitchell said we now have a huge new population of patients who no longer need to go through all the side effects that come along with chemo.

Chemo and hormone therapy didn't work but this one-time treatment with more personalized immunotherapy did work for Perkins.

In a comment also published by Nature Medicine, expert Laszlo Radvanyi from Canada's Ontario Institute for Cancer Research said the woman's response to the treatment was "unprecedented" for such advanced breast cancer.

The trial is due to enrol around 330 patients to fully put the technique through its paces, and should be able to generate statistically-validated results in 2023.

Gilead shares gained as much as 3.7 percent on Monday, and were up 1.9 percent to $69.60 at 11:16 NY. The tumour is assigned a "recurrence score" from 0 to 100 - higher the score, greater the chance the cancer will recur, with chemotherapy reducing the risk of recurrence.

Thousands of breast cancer patients may be safely spared the "agony of chemotherapy" thanks to new genetic testing.

"About one in eight women are diagnosed with breast cancer during their lifetime".

Rosenberg says investigators have already tested the approach in liver and colorectal cancer, but the "big picture" is that it is not cancer type-specific. The researchers gave half the women hormone-blocking drugs alone, and half hormone-blocking drugs and chemotherapy.

The text messages were most effective at reducing distress at the 2- and 4-month marks, according to the data presented by chief author Kuang-Yi Wen, an assistant professor in the Cancer Prevention and Control program at Fox Chase.

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