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‘Game-changing’ drug cuts women’s risk of dying from breast cancer by a third

Researchers studied 1,836 patients at 671 clinics around the world who were at high risk for HER2-negative early-stage breast cancer and their BRCA1 or BRCA2 gene mutations.

Computer artwork representing breast cancer
Cancer growth suppressor targets so-called BRCA1 mutant ‘Jolie gene’

A “game-changing” drug has been found to reduce the risk of young women dying from breast cancer by a third.

The cancer growth suppressor targets the so-called BRCA1 mutant ‘Jolie gene’ and has been hailed as a “major step forward” in the treatment of women with early-stage tumors.

Researchers studied 1,836 patients at 671 clinics around the world who were at high risk for HER2-negative early-stage breast cancer and their BRCA1 or BRCA2 gene mutations.

They underwent standard treatments including surgery, chemotherapy, hormone therapy, and radiation.

Half of the participants randomly assigned to receive the pill twice daily for one year had a 32% lower risk of death compared with the half given the placebo pill.

The 10-year international OlympiA trial reported preliminary results as early as two and a half because it also showed the drug reduced breast cancer recurrence by 42 percent.







The drug has been described as a ‘game changer’
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Professor Kristian Helin, chief executive of Cancer Research London, said: “This is a huge step forward in the treatment of early-stage hereditary breast cancer.

“Olaparib has major benefits for this group of patients, increasing the chances of being cancer-free and potentially curative after initial treatment.

“We hope olaparib will now be licensed in Europe and approved in the UK for NHS patients immediately.

“Olaparib is the world’s first cancer drug that targets genetic errors directly.

“The story of olaparib shows how a basic science discovery, identifying one of cancer’s weak points, can lead to new game-changing treatments.”

The drug has previously been used to treat a small number of patients with other forms of the disease, such as ovarian cancer.

Also known by the brand name Lynparza, it works by targeting a protein called Poly ADP-ribose polymerase (PARP) that helps damaged cells repair themselves.

Cancer cells with mutations in the BRCA1 or BRCA2 genes rely on PARP to keep their DNA healthy.

Olaparib prevents PARP from repairing DNA damage so that cancer cells die.

It is now expected to be quickly reused by the NHS to help cure 2,000 women a year with early-stage breast cancer and a BRCA gene mutation.

Women who have these errors in their DNA repair tend to develop breast cancer at a younger age.

BRCA 1 and 2 cancers account for about 5% of all breast cancers but can especially be fatal.

Hollywood star Angelina Jolie’s mother has died of breast cancer and Angelina has a BRCA1 gene mutation. She chose to have a double mastectomy due to the increased genetic risk.

OlympiA executive committee chair Professor Andrew Tutt, King’s College London, said: “Today’s results are great news for many women with hereditary breast cancer.

“Most breast cancers are identified at an early stage and many patients do very well, but for some, the risk of the cancer coming back remains unacceptably high, even after chemotherapy. treat.

“OlympiA has shown that after selecting women with an inherited BRCA mutation through genetic testing, we can use olaparib to directly target a weakness in their cancer and improve their chances of survival. their survival.”







The drug was found to reduce the risk of young women dying from breast cancer by a third (Available image)
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The findings, including four years of patient follow-up, are being presented at the European Society of Medical Oncology congress.

Dr Simon Vincent, director of research, support and influence at Breast Cancer Now, said: “It is exciting that this study shows that olaparib can save lives and prevent recurrence in some women and men. women living with primary breast cancer with a genetically altered BRCA gene, commonly known as the ‘Jolie gene’.

“This breakthrough is testament to the outstanding work over the past 20 years by world-class researchers – including many UK researchers funded by Breast Cancer Now – who have discovered discovered weaknesses in breast cancer cells and laid the groundwork for this discovery.”

The drug, which comes as an oral tablet, has been approved in the US and is currently being evaluated for use in the UK and on the NHS.

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https://www.mirror.co.uk/lifestyle/health/game-changing-drug-cuts-risk-26484680 'Game-changing' drug cuts women's risk of dying from breast cancer by a third

Fry Electronics Team

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