New Clinical Data Show Benefits of Femara(R) for Women with Breast Cancer Even After Prolonged Period of No Anti-Cancer Treatment
Women with hormone-sensitive early breast cancer who switched to Femara(R) (letrozole tablets) from placebo as part of a landmark trial experienced significant improvements in overall survival, disease-free survival and distant metastases, according to data presented at the 28th annual San Antonio Breast Cancer Symposium in Texas.
The analysis represents the first time that an aromatase inhibitor has demonstrated a benefit in starting therapy up to five years after the end of a patient taking tamoxifen, another medicine used in the treatment of hormone-related breast cancers.
In this new analysis of the landmark MA-17 trial, postmenopausal women who switched from placebo to Femara experienced a 69 percent reduction in the risk that their breast cancer would return (recurrence). There also was a 72 percent reduction in the risk that the cancer would spread to a distant part of the body (metastasis). A 47 percent reduction in the risk of dying from their disease was also observed. These observations must be confirmed by additional analysis and longer-term follow-up.
MA-17 is a Phase III, international, double-blinded, randomized, multi-center trial. It is coordinated by the National Cancer Institute of Canada Clinical Trials Group at Queens University in Kingston, Ontario, Canada with funding from the Canadian Cancer Society and supported by Novartis.