Advanced breast cancer 'eradicated' in world first

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"The study should have a huge impact on doctors and patients", Albain said.

"We are de-escalating toxic therapy".

Judy Perkins had hormone receptor-positive breast cancer that had spread to her liver and other organs and had exhausted all other treatment options, including several rounds of chemotherapy, and none had stopped the disease progressing.

Doctors have reported a "complete and durable regression" of an advanced breast cancer after treating a woman with pioneering therapy using her own immune system.

All the same, he says, the message of the new study isn't that chemotherapy is irrelevant.

An early form of adoptive immunotherapy, called CAR-T therapy, exhibited severe side effects across many of its clinical trials, including some deaths.

"It's also highly significant that this outcome suggests reprogramming patients' immune cells as part of a two-pronged attack could be a viable way to treat ER-positive tumours - which could open this approach up to benefit many patients with metastatic breast cancer".

The genomic test for this type of breast cancer, called Oncotype DX, measures the expression of 21 genes in tumor tissue removed at the time of surgery and predicts risk of recurrence on a scale of 0 to 100.

"These findings, showing no benefit from receiving chemotherapy plus hormone therapy for most patients in this intermediate-risk group, will go a long way to support oncologists and patients in decisions about the best course of treatment", Dr. Jeffrey Abrams, the associate director of the National Cancer Institute's Cancer Therapy Evaluation Program, stated in a press release.

The result: After an average follow-up of 7.5 years, the researchers saw no added benefit in this group to adding chemotherapy to the treatment mix.

Currently, women who get a low score on the test are told they do not need chemo, those with a high score are told they definitely do.

St Vincent's University Hospital in Dublin had the second highest number of participating patients from the 1,182 research units involved. Ten years later it came back and had spread. Thankfully, the results were extremely successful: the therapy completely wiped out the cancer cells, and two years later, doctors found no traces of cancerous cells inside her. "There are some people who say, 'I don't care what you say, I'm never going to do chemo,"' and won't even have the gene test, she said. She also watched her brother and sister - who died of thyroid cancer and leukemia, respectively - suffer through chemotherapy treatments.

Findings from a major global clinical trial suggest a significant number of women with the most common form of early-stage breast cancer do not need chemotherapy after surgery.

"I don't know any doctor who isn't excited about this", he said.

Commenting on the results, Professor Bryan Hennessy, clinical lead, Cancer Trials Ireland, said: "This is a globally important breast cancer trial".

"A lot of work needs to be done, but the potential exists for a paradigm shift in cancer therapy - a unique drug for every cancer patient", he said.

The study found that gene tests on tumour samples were able to identify women who could safely skip chemotherapy and take only a drug that blocks the hormone estrogen or stops the body from making it.

The breast cancer epicemic can not be reversed without considering women's exposure to chemical cocktails throughout their lives, argued Professor Andreas Kortenkamp of the University of London, presenting new scientific evidence to the European Parliament.

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