Breast Cancer Research and Clinical Trials at Virginia Oncology Associates
Breast Cancer Research Trials – Why?
To bring a new treatment to market, certain requirements must be met for FDA (Federal Drug Administration) approval to show that the treatment is effective and safe, and how much is advisable (dosing). Clinical research is the process used to achieve this approval.
The treatment has already undergone several studies during earlier phases of the clinical research process. Therefore the treatment being studied is considered safe for humans and is carefully administered by cancer research specialists in our offices.
Patients in the clinical trial are monitored very carefully throughout the treatment and afterward. If the new cancer treatment passes through all phases of clinical research with approved FDA results, then it’s eligible to become a widely-used treatment that would be generally available for breast cancer doctors to offer patients.
The Importance of Clinical Trials for Triple-Negative Breast Cancer Treatment
Not all types of breast cancer are the same, and some types of breast cancer treatment have well-established treatment protocols that work well for many patients. Treatments exist now for all three forms of hormone receptor-related breast cancer. When there are no hormone receptors on the cancer cells, it’s considered triple-negative breast cancer. This particular type is a bit more challenging to treat and is the reason for further clinical research.
Triple-negative breast cancer is one type of breast cancer that doesn’t have a well-defined treatment plan. Because this affects breast cancer patients and their ability to provide effective care, Virginia Oncology Associates’ breast cancer specialists are leading the way to find a new triple-negative breast cancer treatment option through clinical trials. One of the oncologists at VOA, Dr. Michael Danso, explains breast cancer clinical trials and the importance of cancer research for triple-negative breast cancer.
What is triple-negative breast cancer?
The oncologist will find out which receptors are active to choose the breast cancer treatment that he/she feels will work best for your cancer. The existing breast cancer treatment options may target one, two, or all three known hormone receptors. However, as implied by its name, “triple negative” breast cancer neither involves nor responds to any treatments targeting the three receptors. Because of this, triple-negative breast cancer is considered to be particularly aggressive.
Since people diagnosed with triple-negative breast cancer don’t typically respond as well to the approved treatments that involve the three receptors, we seek a new approach. This potential option is a clinical trial with the hope of a new, successful targeted treatment designed specifically for triple negative breast cancer. Virginia Oncology Associates’ passion for finding an effective treatment transforms into the potential of hope for patients.
Is the triple-negative breast cancer clinical trial for me?
You will meet with a clinical research nurse at one of the Virginia Oncology Associates locations to review the trial’s selection criteria, which include but may not be limited to:
A tumor that is any size with no axillary lymph nodes involvement;
- No metastatic disease (cancer has not spread elsewhere);
- No previous treatments;
- Good cardiac function.
It’s our hope that the clinical trial results will make a helpful impact and then ultimately provide an FDA-approved treatment option for this specific form of breast cancer. This research brings hope to triple-negative breast cancer patients for a new treatment option and renewed hope for life.
Check out these blogs to learn more about advancements in triple-negative breast cancer treatment due to clinical trials:
Breast Cancer Trials Available at VOA
Breast cancer clinical trials are available at select Virginia Oncology Associates locations, including Chesapeake, Hampton, Newport News, Norfolk, and Virginia Beach.
For more information on participating in this trial or if you would like to learn more about our other clinical trials, please ask your oncologist.