ASCO: Early studies show promise in treating metastatic breast cancer

Debu Tripathy, CURE's editor-in-chief, is in Chicago for the annual meeting of the American Society of Clinical Oncology and is reporting on the latest in metastatic breast cancer. There are several targeted drugs that are being tested in early studies that appear promising. "A new drug, known as AMG-386 or trametinib, is being tested with taxol. At early glance seems to be a very active combination," he says. "But this is really an incomplete observation. We'll need to see how long these remissions last and how they compare to other drugs."The class of drugs called CDK4/6 inhibitors are also being looked at closely by scientists. "In hormone receptor-positive cancers, these drugs have already shown pretty big improvements in disease-free outcomes and may be on the verge of approval," he says. One drug is also being tested in triple-negative breast cancer. The usefulness of PARP inhibitors is still being explored for patients with metastatic breast cancer in women with BRCA mutations. A recent study of veliparib is now reporting results that show it may have activity in patients with BRCA 1 or 2 mutation.