October 28, 2009 — A clinical trial for women with an aggressive form of metastatic breast cancer is now open at Beaumont Hospital, Royal Oak, and will open soon at the University of Michigan Comprehensive Cancer Center in Ann Arbor, the only sites in the state to be designated as study locations. The trial features a novel drug that is seen as a significant breakthrough in the treatment of triple negative breast cancer or TNBC.
The hospitals are seeking a limited number of women with TNBC to test an experimental medication, BSI 201, which is a poly (ADP-ribose) polymerase or PARP inhibitor. PARP is an enzyme that normal cells use to repair DNA when it is damaged. It is thought that cancer cells also use PARP to overcome the effects of chemotherapy, allowing the cells to repair damage from chemotherapy and therefore continue to grow. When used in conjunction with traditional chemotherapeutic drugs that damage the DNA of the cancer cell, this targeted PARP inhibitor selectively blocks a cancer cell’s ability to repair itself, thus causing the cancer cell to die. MORE.