A drug used to treat kidney cancer, Afinitor, has proved effective in improving the survival rates in women suffering from breast cancers. The treatment combines the use of Afinitor along with hormonal therapy. The results were found to double the survival rate and reduce the risk of cancer progression up to 57%. This increase was in comparison to treatment using only exemestane, which is the most popular drug that is used in breast cancer treatments. Afinitor or Everolimus is a drug that has proved affective in treating patients with advanced breast cancers. The drug, when used with hormonal therapy, proved useful even in patients who previously did not respond to hormonal therapies. This has lead to the conclusion that Everolimus can be a potentially useful drug for breast cancer treatment. It also opens up new avenues for researching treatment methods for critical patients.
In extreme cases such as ER+HER-2, there is no drug, as of now, that can be used for treatment. Afinitor is a Novartis Oncology product. Studies were carried on regarding the effects of Afinitor when used alone in treatments and when used in combination with exemestane. These human studies were carried out on postmenopausal females suffering with advanced stages of breast cancer. These were women who were being treated with hormonal therapies such as anastrazole or letrozole but were not responsive to the treatment. Their cancer levels had progressed to a more advanced stage despite treatment. These human studies are called Breast Cancer Trials of Oral Everolimus-2 or BOLERO-2.
In hormonal therapies, it has been found that the response of women who have metastatic disease is very poor and those who respond to the treatment become resistant to it. As a result of this, the progression of cancer increases and life expectancy reduces. The study consisted of 724 patients from 189 different placed all over the world. Selection criteria were random. 485 patients were orally administered 10 mg of everolimus daily in addition to 25 mg per day of exemestane. The remaining 239 patients were orally given 25 mg per day of exemestane and a placebo. It was found that progression free survival or PFS registered a marked improvement in women who were administered a combination of drugs. PFS shot up to 6.9 months for the combination treatment of exemestane and everolimus and 2.8 months for patients on solitary treatment of exemestane. The results were consistent for all patients, irrespective of their previous health and treatment history.