A group of experts in the US have announced plans to test a new drug which they believe could be effective in the battle against certain kinds of breast cancer, with an aim to making it widely available within five years.
In a report published in the American Association for Cancer Research's Clinical Cancer Research journal, Affitoxin may work in women suffering from HER2-positive breast cancer whose bodies no longer respond to Herceptin.
Early trials supported the scientists' hypothesis that Affitoxin can shrink some tumours where Herceptin has failed. At present, patients have no other alternative to the medication if it proves unsuccessful.
"Affitoxin could offer another therapeutic option for those patients," said lead author Dr Japek Capala. "Herceptin has revolutionised the treatment of patients with HER2-positive breast cancer, but a significant number of tumours acquire resistance."
Earlier this week, Women's Health Concern chief executive Patrick Shervington insisted that openness and good communication can often prove crucial to the early diagnosis of cancer.