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Ixempra™ plus Xeloda® Improves Progression-free Survival in Triple-negative Metastatic Breast Cancer

December 25, 2008

By CancerConsultants.com

The combination of Ixempra® (ixabepilone) and Xeloda® (capecitabine) significantly increases progression-free survival in women with triple-negative metastatic breast cancer, according to the results of a study presented at the San Antonio Breast Cancer Symposium on December 12, 2008.[1]

How often should a cancer patient get new scans?

December 19, 2008

By Dr. Otis Brawley, Chief Medical Officer, American Cancer Society

I have metastatic breast cancer, so far in bones only. Whenever I go to see doctors other than my oncologist, they want to know about when and how often additional testing and/or scans are performed. Generally speaking, are additional testing and/or scans done in the absence of new symptoms?

Tykerb, Femara Drug Combination Delays Breast Cancer

December 17, 2008

By Chrissie Cole

A Phase III study showed that a combination of Novartis’s drug Femara and GlaxoSmithKline’s drug Tykerb can significantly delay progression of breast cancer in some patients, said researchers on Thursday.

Encouraging doctors to use Femara, chemically known as letrozole with Tykerb, or lapatinib, means millions of dollars in potential extra sales for Glaxo, but it will depend largely on how many patients benefit.

A study involving 1,286 patients found a sub-set of women with aggressive HER2-positive metastatic breast cancer – tumors that overproduce a protein known as HER2 – gained considerably when taking both drugs together.

Ixabepilone With Capecitabine Boosts Survival in Taxane-Resistant Metastatic Breast Cancer Patients:

December 16, 2008

By Jill Stein

SAN ANTONIO, Tex —  Ixabepilone on top of capecitabine improves progression-free survival in women with metastatic breast cancer resistant to taxanes and resistant to or pretreated with an anthracycline, researchers reported at the 31st Annual San Antonio Breast Cancer Symposium (SABCS).

Henri Roche, MD, PhD, Institut Claudius Regaud, Toulouse, France, and colleagues reported results from a prespecified pooled subset of resistant patients from 2 phase 3 trials in a poster presentation here on December 12.

Ixabepilone Improves Outcomes in Triple-Negative Advanced Breast Cancer: Presented at SABCS

December 16, 2008

By Bruce Sylvester, DocGuide.com

SAN ANTONIO, Tex —  Ixabepilone plus capecitabine is the first combination regimen to show a statistically significant benefit in progression-free survival (PFS) for women with advanced, triple-negative-tumour, metastatic breast cancer, according to an analysis of data from 2 phase 3 trials.

Understanding Metastasis

December 13, 2008

By Beverley Caley

Evidence presented on Saturday at SABCS emphasized that breast cancer metastasis is even more complicated than previously thought. However, researchers are making progress in understanding its complexities and are devising new treatments and treatment strategies based on their improved understanding.

A presentation by Larry Norton, MD, of Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center, highlighted how modern molecular science is challenging what is known about cancer. One new concept is the “self-seeding” of tumor cells, the idea that tumor cells that have metastasized to another site in the body can return to the primary tumor. This self-seeding by these more aggressive metastatic cells makes the primary tumor stronger by helping it develop more blood vessels and generally promoting its growth. 

SABCS: Estradiol May Restore Breast Tumor Sensitivity to Aromatase Inhibitors

December 13, 2008

By Charles Bankhead, MedPageToday

SAN ANTONIO — Breast tumors that develop resistance to aromatase inhibitors may reacquire sensitivity with low-dose estradiol, according to a small study reported here.

About 30% of a small group with an aromatase inhibitor-resistant- devmalignancyeloped stable disease or better responses with low-dose estradiol, found Matthew Ellis, MB, Ph.D., of Washington University in St. Louis.

Several patients then responded to retreatment with an aromatase inhibitor, Dr. Ellis said at the San Antonio Breast Cancer Symposium.

Ibandronate Safely Reduces Pain in Breast Cancer Patients With Metastatic Bone Disease: Presented at SABCS

December 12, 2008

By Genie Benoist

SAN ANTONIO, Tex — The third-generation amino-bisphosphonate ibandronate produces a profound and sustained pain reduction in breast cancer patients without metastatic bone disease, according to an interim analysis of a large-scale noninterventional study presented at the 31st Annual San Antonio Breast Cancer Symposium (SABCS).

The improvement in pain observed in this study occurred without the need for an increase in analgesics, and treatment was associated with a renal-safety profile comparable to that observed in randomised clinical trials.

HER2 Levels May Aid in Treatment Selection for Metastatic Breast Cancer

December 3, 2008

By American Association for Cancer Research

Newswise — Findings published in the December 1, 2008, issue of Clinical Cancer Research, a journal of the American Association for Cancer Research, show lapatinib benefits women with HER2-positive breast cancer, while women with HER2-negative breast cancer or those who express EGRF alone derive no incremental benefit. In addition, a misclassification of metastatic breast cancer patients by as much as 10 percent prevents some people from receiving optimal therapy.

Lapatinib, an oral chemotherapy agent, inhibits both HER2 and EGRF receptors, leaving unanswered questions about which patients are more likely to benefit. Researchers at the Norris Comprehensive Cancer Center found that HER2 amplification (“HER2-positive”), but not EGRF expression, is correlated with responsiveness to lapatinib. Women with both high and low levels of HER2 amplification respond to lapatinib. However, women with HER2-negative metastatic breast cancers do not respond.