Researchers at the Case Comprehensive Cancer Center at Case Western Reserve University School of Medicine in the US have discovered that an existing drug used to treat other conditions, including multiple sclerosis, could be effective in fighting triple-negative breast cancer.
The therapy interferon-ß could help treat this aggressive form of breast cancer, with the study showing that triple-negative breast cancer cells are highly vulnerable to the drug, which is a potent antimicrobial that activates the immune system.
As triple-negative breast cancer is the most lethal form of the disease, any progress in fighting it will be welcomed by patients and doctors alike.
First author of the study and pathology graduate student at the institution Mary Doherty explained that interferon-ß has been shown to reverse “some of the more aggressive features” of this form of cancer, which are known to be responsible for metastasis and the failure of other therapies.
Ms Doherty added: “We found that evidence of interferon-ß in triple-negative breast cancer tumours correlates with improved patient survival following chemotherapy.”
This study was conducted using cancer cells in laboratory conditions, and followed up by using the breast cancer tissue database. The next stage is to carry out clinical trials, although the researchers need to find an effective way of delivering the interferon-ß.
While this therapy is not yet ready for patient use, there have been other breakthroughs in breast cancer treatment in recent months. Earlier this year, the NHS agreed a deal to make an innovative breast cancer drug available to patients, after previously rejecting it over cost worries.
When you’re battling breast cancer it can be hard to find clothing you feel comfortable in. Come to Brave Ladies to find mastectomy tops and other clothes you’ll look and feel fabulous in.