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Emerging research uncovers greater understanding of certain breast cancers

Research now showing different treatment options for triple negative breast cancers
Research now showing different treatment options for triple negative breast cancers

WESTON, Fla. – An estimated 10% to 20% of breast cancers are known as “triple negative,” meaning they don’t respond to hormonal therapies and other medications.

While this can make triple negative breast cancer more deadly, Dr. Thomas Samuel, an oncologist with the Cleveland Clinic Weston, said a recent study found sub-types of the disease that respond differently to treatment.

“What this tells us is that if you have some of these certain sub-types, they may need less therapy than we would normally recommend. In other words, all triple negative breast cancers are not the same and they shouldn’t all be treated the same. There really should be a breakdown of what type of triple negative cancer it is and then tailor the treatment to that diagnosis,”  he said.

Samuel said research needs to focus on molecular and genetic testing to find more treatment options for these sub-types of triple negative breast cancer.

And data from a prospective study continues to show that patients with certain blood cancers have a low response to the COVID-19 vaccine.

The latest prospective study found that fewer than 40% of patients with Chronic Lymphocytic Leukemia, or CLL, had an adequate antibody response after the second dose of the vaccine.

Other studies have showed a low response rate for people with multiple myeloma.

Despite the findings, researchers said patients should still get vaccinated to achieve some level of protection against the virus and continue to follow precautionary guidelines.


About the Authors:

Veteran journalist Kathleen Corso is the special projects producer for Local 10 News.

Kristi Krueger has built a solid reputation as an award-winning medical reporter and effervescent anchor. She joined Local 10 in August 1993. After many years co-anchoring the 6 p.m. and 11 p.m., Kristi now co-anchors the noon newscasts, giving her more time in the evening with her family.