Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

New hope for advanced post-menopausal breast cancer patients resistant to hormonal therapy

Date:
September 25, 2011
Source:
ECCO-the European CanCer Organisation
Summary:
Results from a Phase III clinical trial have shown that combining two existing cancer drugs to treat post-menopausal women with advanced breast cancer resistant to hormonal therapy significantly improves outcome. The BOLERO 2 trial showed that women treated with a combination of everolimus and exemestane had an improved progression-free survival of nearly seven months compared to women who were treated only with exemestane.

Results from a phase III clinical trial have shown that combining two existing cancer drugs to treat post-menopausal women with advanced breast cancer resistant to hormonal therapy significantly improves outcome. Researchers told the 2011 European Multidisciplinary Cancer Congress that women treated with a combination of everolimus and exemestane had an improved progression-free survival of nearly seven months compared to women who were treated only with exemestane.

Trial leader, Professor José Baselga from the Massachusetts General Hospital and Harvard Medical School, Boston (USA), will tell the meeting: "These results are impressive and, potentially, could represent a new therapeutic option for women with advanced post-menopausal breast cancer who have previously been treated with hormonal therapy."

The hormone oestrogen promotes the growth of about two thirds of breast cancers, and hormonal therapies such as exemestane, which block the effect of oestrogen or reduce oestrogen levels, are used to treat these hormone receptor-positive breast cancers. However, many breast cancer patients and nearly all patients with advanced breast cancer that has spread (metastasised) to other parts of the body become resistant to hormonal therapy. "When patients stop responding to hormonal therapy, the benefits from any secondary therapy are limited," says Prof. Baselga.

Exemestane is currently used to treat women who have metastatic breast cancer and women whose breast cancer has returned after initial treatment. It is also used to treat women with early breast cancer after they have completed two or three years of treatment with another hormonal therapy, tamoxifen.

Everolimus is an established treatment for recurrent, advanced kidney cancer and researchers are now looking at its use in other cancers. Phase II trials involving patients with advanced cancer driven by oestrogen receptor-positive advanced breast cancer have been promising when everolimus is used on its own or in combination with hormonal therapy. In order to follow this up, the phase III clinical trial BOLERO 2 was set up to investigate the efficacy of everolimus in patients who have become resistant to aromatase inhibitors -- drugs that decrease the amount of oestrogen produced and help to slow or reverse the growth of the cancer.

The multi-national trial was conducted with 724 patients in 24 countries, with an average age of 62. All patients had been treated previously with the aromatase inhibitors letrozole or anastrozole. Earlier treatments also included tamoxifen (48% of patients), fulvestrant (16% of patients) and chemotherapy (68% of patients).

A group of 485 patients was randomised to receive everolimus and exemestane, while 239 received only exemestane until the disease progressed or unacceptable levels of toxicity were recorded. The trial was stopped early after an interim analysis revealed that further tumour growth did not occur for nearly 11 months in patients who received everolimus, whereas patients receiving only exemestane had progression-free survival for approximately four months.

Prof Baselga says: "This is a highly significant improvement in the time to disease progression in a patient population that is highly resistant to therapy."

Trial sponsor Novartis plans to file worldwide regulatory submissions for everolimus as a treatment for oestrogen receptor-positive, advanced breast cancer by the end of 2011.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by ECCO-the European CanCer Organisation. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

ECCO-the European CanCer Organisation. "New hope for advanced post-menopausal breast cancer patients resistant to hormonal therapy." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 25 September 2011. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2011/09/110925192709.htm>.
ECCO-the European CanCer Organisation. (2011, September 25). New hope for advanced post-menopausal breast cancer patients resistant to hormonal therapy. ScienceDaily. Retrieved April 21, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2011/09/110925192709.htm
ECCO-the European CanCer Organisation. "New hope for advanced post-menopausal breast cancer patients resistant to hormonal therapy." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2011/09/110925192709.htm (accessed April 21, 2014).

Share This



More Health & Medicine News

Monday, April 21, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Nine-Month-Old Baby Can't Open His Mouth

Nine-Month-Old Baby Can't Open His Mouth

Newsy (Apr. 19, 2014) — Nine-month-old Wyatt Scott was born with a rare disorder called congenital trismus, which prevents him from opening his mouth. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
'Holy Grail' Of Weight Loss? New Find Could Be It

'Holy Grail' Of Weight Loss? New Find Could Be It

Newsy (Apr. 18, 2014) — In a potential breakthrough for future obesity treatments, scientists have used MRI scans to pinpoint brown fat in a living adult for the first time. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Little Progress Made In Fighting Food Poisoning, CDC Says

Little Progress Made In Fighting Food Poisoning, CDC Says

Newsy (Apr. 18, 2014) — A new report shows rates of two foodborne infections increased in the U.S. in recent years, while salmonella actually dropped 9 percent. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Scientists Create Stem Cells From Adult Skin Cells

Scientists Create Stem Cells From Adult Skin Cells

Newsy (Apr. 17, 2014) — The breakthrough could mean a cure for some serious diseases and even the possibility of human cloning, but it's all still a way off. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
 
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:  

Breaking News:
from the past week

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:  

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile iPhone Android Web
Follow Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins