Scientist in Europe has succeeded in finding a breakthrough for breast cancer, which can be a potential cure. Breast cancer is the most frequent type of cancer in women. Approximately 1 in 8 women in America is to develop breast cancer during their lifetime. However, this clinical trial might have found a way to eliminate this type of cancer once and for all.
Professor Nigel Bundred presented the research at the European Breast Cancer Conference that took place in Amsterdam. He said that they had tested the effectiveness of drugs called Lapatinib and Herceptin (trastuzumab).
These two drugs are already part of the treatment for breast cancer, but they haven’t been combined previously and haven’t been used prior to chemo and surgery. The researchers discovered that they can put an end to certain cancer types in just 11 days.
The research was funded by Cancer Research UK and they used these drugs against a protein known as HER2 (human epidermal growth factor receptor 2). This protein has an effect on the division and growth of cancer cells. Additionally, the chances that it will return are bigger than other cancer types.
This treatment is very appealing because it eliminates the need for surgery and chemo. Additionally, it also allows the person to avoid side-effects like fatigue, vomiting and hair loss. Chemotherapy is not completely effective, and it is never the best option for patients, thereby alternative methods are always welcomed.
The Results from the Study
This study included 257 participants with HER2 positive breast cancer. Half of the participant were given the drug combo, and the second half were the control group. The results showed that from the candidates who were on the drug, 11% had no remaining cancer cells during the first two weeks and 17% had significantly shrunken tumors.
The candidates from the control group were given Herceptin, and it was discovered that only 3 % had shrunken tumors and 0% were with no trace of cancer cells. It is very evident that when the two drugs a combined, they are more powerful against breast cancer.
The big problem is that Herceptin is only licensed for use alongside chemo, but not alone. However, this may change thanks to this study.
At the end of the day, there is still a lot to be done, but researchers are getting closer and closer to discovering the cure for cancer.