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Drug hope for victims of cancer.

A new treatment combination could help thousands of younger women with breast cancer live longer, research suggests.

Adding ribociclib, a targeted drug which disrupts cancer cells, to standard hormone therapy was found to boost survival among pre-menopausal patients with an advanced form of the disease.

The risk of death was cut by almost a third, compared to those treated with hormone therapy alone, according to the study presented at the American Society of Clinical Oncology (ASCO) annual meeting in Chicago.

Responding to the findings, Baroness Delyth Morgan, chief executive at Breast Cancer Care and Breast Cancer Now, said: "This is indescribably good news for patients and their families."

The research, led by Dr Sara Hurvitz, from the University of California in Los Angeles, followed 672 pre-menopausal women under the age of 59, who had advanced hormone receptor positive, HER2 negative breast cancer.

The patients were assigned either ribociclib, a drug which targets and interferes with processes in the cells which cause cancer to grow, or a placebo. All the women also received hormone therapy.

After 42 months, 70 per cent of those treated with the combination therapy were still alive, compared to 46 per cent of those who only received hormone therapy.

"This is the first study to show improved survival for any targeted therapy when used with endocrine therapy as a first-line treatment for advanced breast cancer," lead author Dr Hurvitz said. "The use of ribociclib as a frontline therapy significantly prolonged overall survival."

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Publication:Express and Star (Wolverhampton, England)
Date:Jun 3, 2019
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