Edith A. Perez, MD, professor of medicine, Mayo Clinic, discusses the antibody drug conjugate T-DM1 (trastuzumab emtansine; Kadcyla) as a treatment for patients with breast cancer.
Perez says the magic of T-DM1 is that it is a combination of trastuzumab and a chemotherapy agent all in one compound. Once the drug is injected into the vein, T-DM1 finds the cells that overexpress HER2 and then places the chemotherapy inside the tumor cell. Perez says this is an optimized delivery of chemotherapy to the HER2+ cells.
Perez thinks T-DM1 is a great drug and she says she is looking forward to results from the MARIANNE trial, which should be available later in 2014. This 3 arm study will examine T-DM1 plus pertuzumab, T-DM1 with pertuzumab or placebo, and trastuzumab plus a taxane (docetaxel or paclitaxel) in patients with metastatic breast cancer. The results have the potential to be practice changing, Perez believes.
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