- Question from Joanne: What are the best-known chemotherapies (along with Herceptin with accompanied HER2/neu gene present) to fight ER/PR-negative breast tumors? Thank you.
Kathy D. Miller, M.D.
For women who have just been diagnosed and who don't have metastatic breast cancer, Herceptin has been combined with either Taxol or Taxotere, alone or with another chemotherapy drug called carboplatin.
We know from those recent trials that adding Herceptin to the chemotherapy dramatically reduces the risk of recurrence in women with HER2-positive breast cancer. That was true regardless of whether those HER2-positive tumors were ER-positive or ER-negative. We have not yet compared the different Herceptin regimens to know if there is a best choice.
Jennifer Armstrong, M.D.
There is also a lot of new information on the use of Herceptin with the regimen known as AC+T. AC+T is a regimen that combines Adriamycin (chemical name: doxorubicin) with cyclophosphamide (brand name: Cytoxan), with or without Taxol (chemical name: paclitaxel) or Taxotere (chemical name: docetaxol). There are recent reports of several large trials that now include almost 10,000 women worldwide that show the safety and efficacy of Herceptin in combination with this regimen in the adjuvant setting. (Women in these trials that were considered for AC+T with Herceptin had involved lymph nodes or large tumors or hormone-receptor-negative tumors that were larger than 1 cm.)
As Dr. Miller said, there are no trials yet comparing the different regimens with Herceptin to each other.
The Ask-the-Expert Online Conference called Hormone-Receptor-Negative Breast Cancer featured Kathy D. Miller, M.D., Marisa Weiss, M.D., and moderator Jennifer Armstrong, M.D. answering your questions about a wide range of issues related to hormone-receptor-negative breast cancer.
Editor's Note: This conference took place in November 2005.
The materials presented in these conferences do not necessarily reflect the views of Breastcancer.org. A qualified healthcare professional should be consulted before using any therapeutic product or regimen discussed. All readers should verify all information and data before employing any therapies described here.
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