Tamoxifen Also Effective in Stopping Abnormal Breast Cells from Becoming Cancerous

University of Pennsylvania Cancer Center
Last Modified: May 18, 1999

Share article


Last year a major study of 13,000 women demonstrated that tamoxifen can significantly reduce the risk of developing breast cancer in some women. In October 1998, the federal Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approved the drug for use in women at increase risk of developing the disease. Now, after further analysis of the data, researchers have found that the drug also benefits women who have benign conditions that may or may not develop into invasive breast cancer.

Dr. Donald Wickerham and his colleagues at the National Surgical Adjuvant Breast and Bowel Project (NSABP) studied a sub-set of 2,019 women in the original Breast Cancer Prevention Trial, which enrolled more than 13,000 participants. They specifically looked at women whose biopsied breast tissue showed either lobular carcinoma in-situ (LCIS) or atypical hyperplasia (AH). These relatively rare conditions are considered indicators that a woman is at risk or developing the disease.

Wickerham found that women with LCIS or AH who took tamoxifen significantly reduced their chance of developing invasive breast cancer compared with a control group that took a placebo, or dummy pill. In the study, 8 women with LCIS in the tamoxifen group developed cancer, compared to 18 women who took a placebo — a 66 percent reduction. Results were even more dramatic for women diagnosed with AH. Only 3 women with AH who took tamoxifen developed invasive breast cancer compared to 23 women in the control group — an 86 percent reduction in invasive breast cancer cases.


News
AACR: Novel Breast Cancer Therapy Exploits Autophagy Response

Oct 24, 2014 - Targeting a cancer cell's heat shock response protein 70 with panobinostat to induce autophagy in the stressed cell, and then introducing an autophagy inhibitor to force the cell to die off, may be an effective novel treatment strategy for breast cancer, according to a Nov. 16 press briefing presented at the American Association for Cancer Research -- National Cancer Institute -- European Organisation for Research and Treatment of Cancer International Conference, "Molecular Targets and Cancer Therapeutics," held from Nov. 15 to 19 in Boston.



I Wish You Knew

How cancer patients have changed my life

View More



Blogs and Web Chats

OncoLink Blogs give our readers a chance to react to and comment on key cancer news topics and provides a forum for OncoLink Experts and readers to share opinions and learn from each other.




OncoLink OncoPilot

Facing a new cancer diagnosis or changing the course of your current treatment? Let our cancer nurses help you through!

Learn More