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What are the different types of research studies?

Comparative Effectiveness Research (CER) Comparative effectiveness research (CER) is a direct comparison of existing options available for treating a particular medical condition. It may compare similar treatments, such as competing drugs, or it may analyze very different interventions, such as surgery and drug therapy. It may also compare the effectiveness of how and when health […]

Relative Risk vs. Absolute Risk

We often hear news reports that something has been found to reduce the risk of breast cancer or reduce the risk of dying from breast cancer. These reports are often misleading because they use numbers representing relative risk reductions. Absolute risk reduction is what really matters, which is often much lower, and often not reported. […]

Outcome Measures or Endpoints for Clinical Trials

NBCC Says: The appropriate selection of outcome measures for cancer trials is a focus of ongoing debate. While recognizing that proper outcome selection is influenced by the specific design characteristics and resource limitations of the study, the National Breast Cancer Coalition believes that endpoints should be chosen in a manner that maximizes the usefulness and […]

Mammography Screening

Does Mammography Screening Save Lives? NBCC Position NBCC believes that there is insufficient evidence to recommend for or against universal screening mammography in any age group of women. Women who have symptoms of breast cancer such as a lump, pain or nipple discharge should seek a diagnostic mammogram. The decision to undergo screening for asymptomatic […]

Anthracyclines

Does the evidence still support their use in the first-line treatment of breast cancer? The anthracycline debate continues. In 2007, the National Breast Cancer Coalition took the position that “for the vast majority of women with breast cancer, anthracycline-based chemotherapy is no more effective and has the potential for more serious toxicities than other known […]

Ductal Carcinoma In Situ (DCIS)

Is DCIS breast cancer? How should it be treated? Controversy over Name Cancer or carcinoma implies invasiveness and DCIS is specifically not invasive. Some scientists and medical professionals are calling for the removal of “carcinoma” from the name for the disease. Nomenclature was discussed at the National Institute of Health State-of-the-Science Conference: Diagnosis and Management […]

Trastuzumab (Herceptin®)

Who will benefit and what is the optimal treatment protocol? HER2 is short for Human Epidermal Growth Factor Receptor 2 (also be called Her-2/neu or ErbB2). All normal breast cells contain copies of the HER2 gene, which gives instructions to the cell on how to make the HER2 protein. The HER2 protein, also called the […]

FDA approves new drug for the treatment of HER2+ metastatic breast cancer

On June 8, the FDA approved Perjeta (pertuzumab), a new anti-HER2 therapy, to treat patients with HER2+ metastatic breast cancer. According to the FDA, the drug is intended for patients who have not received prior treatment for metastatic breast cancer with an anti-HER2 therapy or chemotherapy and is to be combined with trastuzumab, another anti-HER2 […]

Supplement on Breast Cancer

The Journal Nature released a supplement on breast cancer today, including two articles on breast cancer metastasis, one on redesigning clinical trials for metastasis, and another on the reality of metastasis, with a discussion of tumor dormancy. MYTHS VS. TRUTHS Brush up on your breast cancer myths and truths. Find out if you know more […]

“Rewiring” Cells to Treat Triple Negative Breast Cancer

Breast cancer cells can be “rewired” to make them more sensitive to chemotherapy, according to a new study published in the journal Cell. Rather than giving targeted therapy and chemotherapy simultaneously, researchers at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) pretreated the cancer cells with targeted therapy, making them more susceptible to DNA-damaging chemotherapy. Dr. Michael […]