Drug Fails in Advanced HER2+ Breast Cancer

“Novartis’ drug Afinitor failed to significantly improve disease-free survival in women with a certain type of advanced breast cancer, a late-stage study presented at the San Antonio Breast Cancer Symposium on Friday showed.

“Results of the Phase III study involving 719 patients found women taking Afinitor in combination with Roche’s breast cancer drug Herceptin and chemotherapy agent paclitaxel lived on average for 15 months without their disease worsening.

“This compared with 14.5 months for those on placebo, the Swiss drugmaker said.

“The study was evaluating the drug as a treatment for women with advanced HER2-positive breast cancer, which is responsible for approximately 20 percent of breast cancer diagnoses.

“Afinitor is already approved in the European Union as a treatment for HER2-negative advanced breast cancer. (Reporting by Caroline Copley)”