Women who are diagnosed with early stage Her2 positive breast cancer, another type of breast cancer, will be put on a drug called Herceptin, an artificial antibody which binds to the cancer cell and kills it.
Giving Herceptin for a longer duration did not improve "disease-free or overall survival" over one year of treatment, research shows, said Dr. Martine J. Piccart, chief of the medicine department at the Jules Bordet Institute in Brussels, Belgium, president of the European Society for Medical Oncology and chair of the Breast International Group.
Piccart said this very large trial conducted in many countries (not in the United States) confirms that the current regimen is still the best.
5. Avastin isn't indicated for breast cancer
Researchers were hoping that combining the cancer Avastin for one year with regular chemotherapy would help women with triple-negative breast cancer. This type of cancer, is very aggressive and has few effective treatment options.
According to new data presented at SABC, adding Avastin (which stops the growth of blood vessels that help tumors grow) did not improve a patient's survival.
Sadly, researchers have nothing extra to add to standard chemotherapy for early, triple-negative breast cancer, said Dr. David Cameron, professor of oncology at Edinburgh University in Scotland, who presented the data at the conference.
Just over a year ago, the FDA withdrew its approval for Avastin for treating breast cancer patients because a review of various studies showed Avastin was not shown to be safe and effective for that use in this type of cancer.
Avastin is still approved for treating certain types of colon, lung, kidney and brain cancer (glioblastoma multiforme).