Mar 15, 2019
The FDA now announces approval of a new immunotherapy agent for treatment of so-called triple negative breast cancer that is either locally advanced or has already spread to other body organs. Triple negative breast cancer, notoriously difficult to treat, has cells that lack any of the three cell receptors which facilitate the effectiveness of traditional hormonal- and chemo- therapy.
The drug is the checkpoint inhibitor atezolizmumab, branded as Tecentriq by Genentech. It received an accelerated thumbs up by the FDA on a compassionate basis. It must be used in conjunction with the chemotherapeutic agent paclitaxel.
Preliminary studies of this combo therapy demonstrated that breast cancer patients whose tumors lack estrogen, progesterone, and growth factor receptors but do have the PD-L1 receptor and therefore were eligible for immunotherapy plus chemotherapy lived 60% longer than those treated with chemotherapy alone.
As these results are only preliminary but very promising. If you or someone you know has advanced breast cancer, suggest that they ask their oncologist about Tecentriq.
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