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Breast Cancer treatment details. Biologic therapy. Dana Farber Cancer Institute, Boston, MA, United States

Survival: 6.8 months
Toxicity Grade: 5
Treatments: Biologic therapy
Country: United States
City/State/Province: Boston, MA
Hospital: Dana Farber Cancer Institute
Journal: Link
Date: 6/2008

Patients: This phase II study involved 229 women with refractory advanced or metastatic breast cancer. The majority (95%) had stage IV disease. The median age was 53, ranging from 32 to 78 years.

Treatment: Patients were treated with lapatinib, a biological therapy that targets two receptors called EGFR and HER.

Toxicities: Four patients died. A relationship between one of these deaths and the treatment was unknown, the other three deaths (from dyspnea, respiratory arrest, and respiratory failure) were not attributed to the treatment. Grade 4 toxicites occurred in 6% of patients; gastrointestinal disorder, increased bilirubin, hypercalcemia, and renal failure.

Results: The median overall survival was 29.4 weeks (6.8 months) for women who had HER2 positive cancer, and 18.6 weeks (4.3 months) for HER2 negative women.

Support: This study was supported by GlaxoSmithKline, which markets lapatinib as TykerbĘ/TyverbĘ.

Correspondence: Dr. H. J. Burstein

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