Women who took Herceptin after surgery and chemotherapy for breast cancer had better survival odds after three years than women who didn't take the drug, a new study found.
Radically changed prognosis
An estimated 15 percent to 25 percent of breast cancers have abnormally high levels of the HER2/neu receptor and, as a result, are usually more aggressive. Herceptin (trastuzumab) blocks activity of the receptor by binding to the part of the receptor outside the cell. The drug has radically changed the prognosis for women with this type of breast cancer, especially when used in combination with chemotherapy. The drug is now standard therapy to reduce the risk of recurrence for those patients with HER2-positive metastatic breast cancer and is even being used for earlier-stage disease.
Timing is everything
In the case of Herceptin, timing is apparently everything.
Herceptin use expanded