Drug treatments for adjuvant chemotherapy in breast cancer: Recent trials and future directions
Antineoplastic Agents, Phytogenic
Antineoplastic Combined Chemotherapy Protocols
Adjuvant chemotherapy with anthracycline-based regimens has been proven to decrease the risk of relapse and cancer-related mortality in women with early-stage breast cancer. The taxanes, paclitaxel and docetaxel, have been incorporated into several adjuvant chemotherapy regimens in recent studies. Some of these trials have matured and demonstrated a definitive benefit with the use of taxanes. The available studies reveal that the addition of a taxane after an anthracycline or the substitution of a taxane into a three-drug regimen, such as docetaxel, doxorubicin and cyclophosphamide, clearly demonstrate a benefit for taxanes in the adjuvant treatment of breast cancer. The toxicities of the taxanes are generally acceptable. Targeted therapy, such as with trastuzumab, has demonstrated a large benefit that previously has never been seen in adjuvant chemotherapy trials, and thus, should now be part of the standard in the treatment of HER-2/neu positive breast cancer. Newer agents are on the horizon.