News

Drug cuts recurrence of breast cancer

By
9:42am, November 24, 2003

Letrozole, a drug that derails the body's production of estrogen, reduces breast cancer recurrences in women who have exhausted the usefulness of the anticancer drug tamoxifen, a new drug trial has revealed.

Tamoxifen stops breast cancers in many women by interfering with estrogen's proliferative effect on tumor cells. But taking tamoxifen for more than 5 years provides no additional benefit, compared with going off the drug after that period.

Researchers identified 5,157 post-menopausal women who had taken tamoxifen for about 5 years and randomly assigned them to take either an inert pill or letrozole, which wipes out nearly all estrogen in the body.

This article is available only to subscribing members. Join SSP today or Log in.

More from this issue of Science News

[title_1]