Brand name: Nerlynx
Chemical name: neratinib
How it works: HER inhibitors work against HER2-positive breast cancers by blocking the ability of the cancer cells to receive chemical signals that tell the cells to grow.
Uses: Nerlynx is used to treat early-stage HER2-positive breast cancer for an extended period of time after surgery (doctors call this extended adjuvant therapy). You take Nerlynx within 2 years after you’ve had surgery and completed a chemotherapy regimen that included Herceptin.
Nerlynx also is used in combination with the chemotherapy medicine Xeloda (chemical name: capecitabine) to treat advanced-stage and metastatic HER2-positive breast cancer in people who have already been treated with at least two HER2 inhibitors for advanced-stage disease.
How it’s given: Nerlynx is a pill taken by mouth. The recommended dose of Nerlynx is 240 mg (6 tablets) once per day with food.
When treating early-stage HER2-positive breast cancer, you take Nerlynx for 1 year.
When treating advanced-stage or metastatic HER2-positive breast cancer, you take Nerlynx with Xeloda on a 21-day cycle:
- you take Nerlynx once a day with food for 21 days
- you take Xeloda twice a day for 14 days, then stop taking Xeloda until the next 21-day cycle starts
For advanced-stage or metastatic HER2-positive breast cancer, you keep taking Nerlynx and Xeloda as long as you are getting benefits from the medicines and aren’t having troubling side effects.