Monday, August 21, 2006

Marker signals whether chemo helps or not

Back to blogging about medical discovery... today researchers are gaining more information on specific cancers, and with this breast cancer finding doctors can better determine how to effectively treat women with chemotherapy.

According to a press release for a study reported in Cancer Research, about half of women whose breast cancer is treated with standard chemotherapy have their cancer return within five years. Most chemotherapeutic drugs have undesirable side effects, but there has been no way to predict who would benefit and who wouldn't. Fortunately, new research findings at the University of Southern California could change that. Researchers at the USC/Norris Comprehensive Cancer Center have discovered a new biological marker in tumors that can help indicate whether a woman's breast cancer will respond to the most commonly prescribed chemotherapy drugs.