Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

No link found between pneumonitis in breast cancer patients and taxane-based chemotherapies

17.11.2004


Researchers at The University of Texas M. D. Anderson Cancer Center have shown that breast cancer patients treated with taxane-based chemotherapies and radiation are not at increased risk of developing a dangerous lung condition involving the inflammation of lung tissue, pneumonitis, according to a study published in the Nov. 17 issue of the Journal of the National Cancer Institute.



These results are vitally important, says Thomas Buchholz, M.D., the study’s corresponding author, because both radiation and taxanes-based chemotherapies, including Taxotere and Taxol, have proven effective in the treatment and improved survival of selected patients with breast cancer. In addition, these results disprove a previous smaller study that had suggested the dangerous correlation between taxanes, radiation treatment and lung injury. "We had the unique opportunity to investigate and clearly focus on the question of whether or not taxanes increase radiation induced lung complications," says Buchholz, professor in the Department of Radiation Oncology at M. D. Anderson. "Both taxanes and radiation therapy are critically important in the treatment of patients whose disease has spread beyond the breast.

"The first study showed higher rates of toxicity and received a great deal of attention within the medical community. We were concerned that oncologists might have some reluctance in giving these appropriate treatments. With this study, we wanted to try and determine if we could alleviate the fears of both the physicians administering, and the patients receiving these potentially life-saving treatments."


The research, led by Tse-Kuan Yu, M.D., Ph.D., a resident in radiation oncology at M. D. Anderson and the study’s principal investigator, analyzed 189 breast cancer patients who had been enrolled in a prospective Phase III randomized trial. The patients had received either four cycles of paclitaxel (Taxol) followed by four cycles of 5-flourouracil, doxorubicin and clyclophsphamide (FAC) and then radiation therapy; or eight cycles of FAC followed by radiation.

The researchers were able to review chest X-rays of the women in both groups and could directly evaluate the rates of lung injury. They concluded that there was statistically no difference in the rate of radiation-induced lung toxicity between the two groups of patients; 5 percent in those treated with the paclitaxel-FAC and radiation, compared with 4.5 percent in those treated with FAC and radiation. In addition, the researchers reported that no patients were hospitalized and/or died as a result of pneumonitis. "Fortunately, we discovered that the rates of seriously related lung injury were very, very low in both groups of patients, making us more comfortable in using these potentially curative treatments without any reservations," says Buchholz.

Buchholz and Yu both point out a key difference between the M. D. Anderson research and the earlier study that suggested the lung damage correlation was, in the M. D. Anderson study, chemotherapy and radiation were given sequentially, compared to simultaneous delivery in the smaller study. "It is possible that taxanes and radiation given simultaneously interact to cause increased lung toxicity, but with our delivery, which is more standard practice, we did not see any clinically-relevant damage," says Yu. "Additionally, the sequencing and extended time between the delivery of paclitaxel and the radiation might be of great importance. In our study, four cycles of paclitaxel and then four cycles of FAC were given, followed by surgery and then radiation. Having the buffer window between the Taxol and the radiation might be, in part, cause for why we did not see any lung injury."

Other researchers collaborating on the M. D. Anderson study include: Gary J. Whitman, M.D.; Howard D. Thames, Ph.D.; Aman U. Buzdar, M.D.; Eric A. Strom, M.D.; George H. Perkins, M.D.; Naomi R. Schechter, M.D.; Marsha D. McNeese, M.D.; Shu-Wan Kau; Eva S. Thomas, M.D.; and Gabriel Hortobagyi, M.D.

Laura Sussman | EurekAlert!
Further information:
http://www.mdanderson.org

More articles from Health and Medicine:

nachricht 'Living bandages': NUST MISIS scientists develop biocompatible anti-burn nanofibers
16.02.2018 | National University of Science and Technology MISIS

nachricht New process allows tailor-made malaria research
16.02.2018 | Eberhard Karls Universität Tübingen

All articles from Health and Medicine >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: In best circles: First integrated circuit from self-assembled polymer

For the first time, a team of researchers at the Max-Planck Institute (MPI) for Polymer Research in Mainz, Germany, has succeeded in making an integrated circuit (IC) from just a monolayer of a semiconducting polymer via a bottom-up, self-assembly approach.

In the self-assembly process, the semiconducting polymer arranges itself into an ordered monolayer in a transistor. The transistors are binary switches used...

Im Focus: Demonstration of a single molecule piezoelectric effect

Breakthrough provides a new concept of the design of molecular motors, sensors and electricity generators at nanoscale

Researchers from the Institute of Organic Chemistry and Biochemistry of the CAS (IOCB Prague), Institute of Physics of the CAS (IP CAS) and Palacký University...

Im Focus: Hybrid optics bring color imaging using ultrathin metalenses into focus

For photographers and scientists, lenses are lifesavers. They reflect and refract light, making possible the imaging systems that drive discovery through the microscope and preserve history through cameras.

But today's glass-based lenses are bulky and resist miniaturization. Next-generation technologies, such as ultrathin cameras or tiny microscopes, require...

Im Focus: Stem cell divisions in the adult brain seen for the first time

Scientists from the University of Zurich have succeeded for the first time in tracking individual stem cells and their neuronal progeny over months within the intact adult brain. This study sheds light on how new neurons are produced throughout life.

The generation of new nerve cells was once thought to taper off at the end of embryonic development. However, recent research has shown that the adult brain...

Im Focus: Interference as a new method for cooling quantum devices

Theoretical physicists propose to use negative interference to control heat flow in quantum devices. Study published in Physical Review Letters

Quantum computer parts are sensitive and need to be cooled to very low temperatures. Their tiny size makes them particularly susceptible to a temperature...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

VideoLinks
Industry & Economy
Event News

2nd International Conference on High Temperature Shape Memory Alloys (HTSMAs)

15.02.2018 | Event News

Aachen DC Grid Summit 2018

13.02.2018 | Event News

How Global Climate Policy Can Learn from the Energy Transition

12.02.2018 | Event News

 
Latest News

Contacting the molecular world through graphene nanoribbons

19.02.2018 | Materials Sciences

When Proteins Shake Hands

19.02.2018 | Materials Sciences

Cells communicate in a dynamic code

19.02.2018 | Life Sciences

VideoLinks
Science & Research
Overview of more VideoLinks >>>