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ExCel research study seeks 4,500 women.

A new clinical trial evaluating a novel approach to breast cancer prevention is recruiting women in the United States and Canada. Called the ExCel research study, this is the first North American clinical trial to evaluate how a class of drugs called aromatase inhibitors prevents the disease.

Coordinated by the National Cancer Institute of Canada Clinical Trials Group (NCIC CTG), the ExCel research study will examine the potential benefit of the aromatase inhibitor exemestane. The drug--currently used to treat postmenopausal women with advanced breast cancer--suppresses estrogen production, a key component in the development of some types of breast cancer.

"Thousands of women have already beat breast cancer thanks to recent research on aromatase inhibitors," says Dr. Paul Goss, the ExCel research study chair. "As a result, we think this could be an effective approach to preventing it from developing in the first place."

The ExCel research study will follow more than 4,500 postmenopausal women from the U.S., Canada and Spain over a five-year period. To be eligible, women must be 35 years or older and have an increased risk of developing breast cancer. Risk factors can include a woman's age, her family history of breast cancer, her age at first menstrual period, and her age at first live birth.

For more information about the ExCel research study and participating study centers, log on to or call toll-free: 1-800-4-CANCER.
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Publication:Medical Update
Date:May 1, 2005
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