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    New Drugs Aim to Defeat Tumor Resistance to EGFR Inhibitors

    Emma Shtivelman, PhD

    In recent years, many people with non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC) have been successfully treated with drugs called EGFR inhibitors. But over time, most patients develop resistance to these drugs, and the drugs stop working. Researchers are hard at work developing new drugs to help patients who can no longer be treated with EGFR inhibitors.

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    The Role of Pertuzumab in Treating HER2+ Breast Cancer

    Emma Shtivelman, PhD

    Pertuzumab (Perjeta) is a relatively new drug that targets HER2, a protein found at higher-than-normal levels in about 15% to 20% of all breast cancers. Too much HER2 leads to tumor growth. Currently, all newly diagnosed breast cancer patients have their tumors’ HER2 levels tested. Knowing whether a patient’s HER2 levels are abnormally high (HER2-positive) or normal (HER2-negative) is a major factor in choosing a treatment, thanks to the availability of trastuzumab (Herceptin) and, now, other HER2-targeted drugs such as Perjeta, T-DM1 (Kadcyla), and lapatinib (Tykerb). These drugs are all used to treat HER2-positive patients.