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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 […]

HER2 Testing

Is HER2 testing accurately identifying breast cancer patients who would benefit from targeted therapy? What is HER2? HER2 (also Her-2/neu or ErbB2) stands for Human Epidermal Growth Factor Receptor 2, and is one of a family of several receptor proteins. All normal breast cells contain the HER2 gene, which gives instructions to the cell on […]

Researchers discover a rotational motion of cells that may have implications for future breast cancer research

Scientists with the U.S. Department of Energy’s Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory have made a discovery that may have important implications for future breast cancer research. These findings are published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences. According to the research team led by Dr. Mina Bissell, human epithelial cells in the breast and […]

Two anti-HER2 drugs may be better than one in the neoadjuvant setting

The combination of trastuzumab and lapatinib, two drugs that inhibit HER2, may be better than treatment with either agent alone in the neoadjuvant (preoperative) setting, according to results of a study published in Lancet. “This is the first demonstration that adding a second anti-HER2 therapy, lapatinib, to trastuzumab is superior to trastuzumab alone in patients […]

Glossary

Absolute risk The risk is the chance that something will happen to you during a certain period of time. It is the number of people who would have the event if 100 people were observed. It is written as a percent (%). For instance, your risk of getting a disease in the next 5 years […]

Research and Evidence

The Scientific Method The steps of the scientific method are to: Ask a Question Do Background Research Construct a Hypothesis Test a Hypothesis by Doing an Experiment Analyze Data and Draw a Conclusion Communicate Results It is important in evaluating research to think about how the hypothesis was tested – was it done in a […]

How do patients and advocates evaluate evidence?

More Questions to Ask About Evidence Where was the research done? Who did the research? Does anyone benefit financially from the research? What is missing? What do we still need to know to get a better picture of the truth? Researchers often – but don’t always – publish the results of their research in journals, […]

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 […]