June 15, 2018

Some breast cancer patients may no longer need chemotherapy

By Karl Oestreich

by Kerri Miller

A new study found that chemotherapy may not be necessary to treat early-stage breast cancer in many patients…MPR News host Kerri Miller talked to Dr. Matthew Goetz, medical oncologist and co-chair of the Breast Cancer Genome-Guided Therapy (BEAUTY) study at the Mayo Clinic about what these changes mean for women with breast cancer.

Reach: Minnesota Public Radio operates 43 stations and serves virtually all of Minnesota and parts of the surrounding states. MPR has more than 100,000 members and more than 900,000 listeners each week, which is the largest audience of any regional public radio network.

Context: In a recent study published in the Journal of Clinical Investigation, Mayo Clinic researchers identified that an FDA drug approved for myelodysplastic syndrome may be useful to treat triple-negative breast cancer, which is one of the most aggressive and lethal types of breast cancer. In this study, Mayo investigators identified that the drug 5-aza-2'-deoxycytidine (decitabine) which is FDA approved for the treatment of certain hematological (blood) cancers, could significantly inhibit the growth of triple-negative breast cancers, and importantly this effect was also seen in tumors resistant to chemotherapy. This response was dependent on the presence of certain critical proteins called DNA methyl transferase proteins that are present in only a subset of triple negative breast cancers. This provides a way to identify which patients could benefit from this therapy. This study was part of the ongoing work from the Breast Cancer Genome-Guided Therapy (BEAUTY) study, co-led by Matthew Goetz, M.D., a Mayo medical oncologist and Judy Boughey, M.D., a Mayo breast surgeon. The BEAUTY study generated patient derived xenografts (immortalizing breast tumor cells) from patients with breast cancer treated with chemotherapy. You can read more about the study on Mayo Clinic News Network.

Contacts:  Colette Gallagher, Joe Dangor

Tags: Breast Cancer, Dr. Matthew Goetz, Minnesota Public Radio, Uncategorized

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