Kadcyla, a new drug recently approved by Pharmac, extends the survival of people with HER2+ advanced breast cancer (ABC). However, some patients don’t benefit at all from Kadcyla, while others find it stops working after a while. There are currently no reliable biomarkers to predict this “treatment resistance”.
Applying advanced genetic methods, Dr Barbara Lipert and her team have identified a panel of 612 genes that could be involved in resistance to Kadcyla. From the 612, they plan to identify a small group of the most likely culprits, which they will de-activate and see how this affects the response to the drug. This could help identify breast cancer patients most likely to benefit from Kadcyla and those who are most likely to develop resistance.
Research grant given in partnership with Breast Cancer Cure and the Health Research Council.