Genentech Discloses Promising Data on Perjeta in Neoadjuvant Treatment For Specific Breast Cancer Patients

Genentech Discloses Promising Data on Perjeta in Neoadjuvant Treatment For Specific Breast Cancer Patients
Genentech, a member of the Roche Group, recently announced encouraging results on its Phase II NeoSphere trial evaluating Perjeta (pertuzumab) as a neoadjuvant (pre-surgery) treatment in specific early breast cancer patients. The data was presented by Dr. Luca Gianni from San Raffaele Hospital, Scientific Institute, Italy (Abstract #505) on May 31 during the 2015 American Society of Clinical Oncology (ASCO) Annual Meeting held in Chicago. Apart from skin cancer, breast cancer is the most commonly diagnosed cancer affecting approximately 234,000 individuals every year in the United States, where it is expected to cause 41,000 deaths in 2015. There are different subtypes of breast cancer including human epidermal growth factor receptor 2 (HER2)-positive breast cancer, a type estimated to affect 20 to 25% of breast cancer patients, characterized by cancer cells with an abnormal high expression of HER2 at their surface. HER2-positive cancers are known to be a particularly aggressive form of breast cancer. Genentech’s Perjeta targets the HER2 receptor, blocking tumor growth and decreasing cancer cell survival. Herceptin (trastuzumab) also binds to the HER2 receptor, although at a different site from Perjeta. The combination of both Perjeta and Herceptin is thought to have an added benefit to block HER2 signalling pathways, consequently effectively preventing tumor cell growth and survival. Perjeta has been approved as a combined therapy with Herceptin and docetaxel (a chemotherapeutic agent) for individuals with metastatic HER2-positive breast cancer that has spread to other parts of the body, and prior to surgery in individuals with HER2-positive, locally a
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