A potent combo of glembatumumab vedotin, and Celldex known as CDX-011 has increased survival of patients with TNBC who have not responded to previous treatments and whose tumors express the protein NMB (GPNMB).   This according to EMERGE, a randomized  IIB clinical trial. Some details:

• TNBC that has resisted previous therapy stymies doctors who don’t know where to turn next.
• Patients in this study have had as many as 11 and a median of six previous therapies.
• CDX-011 is administered intravenously and binds to GPNMB.  It is then released into cells where it interferes with cell growth and may lead to cell death in a cancerous tumor.

According to an article in OncLive:

“In heavily pretreated patients, you typically do not observe any kind of progression-free survival beyond the first therapy,” said Linda T. Vahdat, MD, professor of medicine and director of the Breast Cancer Research Program at Weill Cornell Medical College in New York and lead investigator of the EMERGE study. “These patients had a median of six prior therapies, so to have any kind of progression-free survival is exciting from a research standpoint.”  Read more.

The research is preliminary, but demonstrates that targeted therapy for TNBC may be in the near future.  It was to be presented at the American Society of Clinical Oncology (ASCO) 2012 June meeting, but a bookkeeping glitch kept the paper from consideration.

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