Tuesday, November 3, 2020

New treatments targeting HER2 tumors

Aggressive therapy set for patients with early stage of breast cancer

An aggressive new therapy that attacks an especially perilous early-stage breast cancer is ready for use on patients.

That, at least, is what's cited in an October-November AARP Magazine story regarding a type of cancer known as HER2+ER+.

The multi-disciplinary therapy was first proven beneficial in later stages of the disease, says the piece. 

The article also notes that "about a quarter of all breast cancers are HER2+" — tumors that have "higher levels of a protein called human epidermal growth factor receptor 2, which tends to make them grow and spread faster than other kinds of breast cancer."

Dr. Vered Stearns
Dr. Vered Stearns, director of the women's malignancies program at the Kimmel Cancer Center at Johns Hopkins University in Baltimore, is quoted by the magazine as saying that new treatments that specifically target HER2 can now expected to be utilized in fighting the disease. 

Accompanying the AARP Magazine article are two noteworthy short sidebars:

• "Aromatase inhibitors (which reduce estrogen), used to prevent recurrence, may prevent breast cancer from developing in the first place."

• "An immunotherapy drug, atezolizumab, is being tested in combination with chemotherapy as a new line of treatment for hard-to-treat triple-negative cancers."

More information about other treatments and drugs can be found in "Rollercoaster: How a man can survive his partner's breast cancer," a VitalityPress book that I, Woody Weingarten, aimed at male caregivers. 

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