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Investigational Cancer Drug Pertuzumab Shows Promising Results in,Advanced Breast Cancer When Combined with Herceptin

increased quantities of the HER2 protein are present on the surface of the tumour cells. This is known as 'HER2-positivity.' High levels of HER2 are present in a particularly aggressive form of the disease which responds poorly to chemotherapy. Research shows that HER2-positivity affects approximately 20-30 percent of women with breast cancer.

About pertuzumab Pertuzumab is a humanized monoclonal antibody designed to bind to the HER2 receptor and inhibit the ability of HER2 to interact with other HER family members (HER1, HER2, HER3, and HER4) on the surface of cancer cells. The HER signaling pathway plays a role in the formation and growth of numerous cancers, and previous clinical trials of pertuzumab in a single agent setting had suggested clinical activity - including stable disease - in heavily pretreated patients with advanced ovarian and breast cancers. Genentech and Roche are evaluating pertuzumab in solid tumors (ovarian and breast cancers), and in combination with other therapies.

About Herceptin (trastuzumab) Herceptin is a humanised antibody, designed to target and block the function of HER2, a protein produced by a specific gene with cancer-causing potential. It has demonstrated efficacy in treating both early and advanced (metastatic) breast cancer. Given on its own as monotherapy as well as in combination with or following standard chemotherapy, Herceptin has been shown to improve response rates, disease-free survival and overall survival while maintaining quality of life in women with HER2-positive breast cancer.

Herceptin received approval for use in the European Union for advanced (metastatic) HER2-positive breast cancer in 2000 and for early HER2-positive breast cancer in 2006. In the advanced setting, Herceptin is now approved for use as a first-line therapy in combination with paclitaxel where anthracyclines are unsuitable, as first-line therapy in combination with docetaxel, and as a single agent in third-line therapy. In M
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