Tuesday, December 15, 2009

Combination of Lapatinib and Trastuzumab a better treatment for breast cancer....

Lapatinib or lapatinib ditosylate is an orally active chemotherapeutic drug treatment for solid tumours such as breast cancer. Patients who meet specific indication criteria may be prescribed lapatinib as part of combination therapy for breast cancer. On March 13, 2007, FDA approved lapatinib in combination therapy for breast cancer patients already using capecitabine.

Recently, researchers from Duke University Medical Center. Dr. Kimberly Blackwell have found more interesting results when they did try the combination of Trastuzumab (monoclonal antibody). As per the claim by the researchers, Lapatinib plus trastuzumab are significantly better than lapatinib alone in extending the lives of breast cancer patients whose tumors are HER2-positive.

Blackwell says, the combination targeted therapy gave patients more than a four-month survival advantage over those who took lapatinib alone. She says the findings may be the first step toward a chemotherapy-free future. This is the first time that a pair of targeted therapies has been shown to be superior to any intervention that paired a targeted therapy with a hormonal or chemotherapy based approach, she said. The interesting claim by the researchers trastuzumab binds to and blocks part of the HER2 growth factor that appears on the surface of some breast cancer cells while lapatinib binds to a second growth factor, EGFR, and part of HER2 that sits below the cell surface. It's sort of a double whammy, disabling the HER2 protein in two places instead of one......

Ref : http://www.dukehealth.org/health_library/news/targeted_therapy_prolongs_life_in_patients_with_her2_positive_breast_cancer

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