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Oncotype DX and node positive breast cancer

Posted 2/27/2013

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  Many of you are familiar with the Oncotype DX test, a genomic test that looks at groups of genes in breast cancer cells and predicts the odds of a recurrence. This test has been around since about 2005 and has been used for women who have a node negative, ER positive breast cancer and are trying to make a decision about chemotherapy. It has been very helpful in adding an important piece of information to this so difficult choice.

  More recently, there have been studies suggesting that this test may also be valuable in making the right decision for women with node positive ER posititve breast cancers. Of course, there are situations in which it is obvious that chemo will be useful, but there are gray areas. Here is a very useful artice from Living Beyond Breast Cancer; I give you the beginning and a link:

Oncotype DX Potentially Useful in Node-Positive Disease

21-gene Recurrence Score predicts recurrence, survival for ER positive breast cancer treated with chemotherapy, tamoxifen

A study using the Oncotype DX test showed a relationship between Recurrence Score and chances of breast cancer recurrence and survival in women with estrogen receptor-positive breast cancer that traveled to the lymph nodes in and around the armpit (axillary lymph nodes) who were treated with hormonal therapy and chemotherapy.

Researchers in Ohio conducted the retrospective study using data from the National Surgical Adjuvant Breast and Bowel Project (NSABP) B-28 trial. Retrospective studies look at participants’ medical histories or records taken from earlier studies to analyze the outcomes of treatments or methods.

Study Background

The Oncotype DX genomic test looks at groups of genes in cancer cells and how they grow and respond to treatment. Samples of tissue taken from surgery are analyzed and given a Recurrence Score, a number between zero and 100 that tells doctors how likely it is for an individual’s cancer to recur. A low Recurrence Score (between zero and 18) means a lower chance of the cancer returning; a high Recurrence Score (above 31) means a higher chance.

The OncoDX genomic test looks at groups of genes in cancer cells and how they grow and respond to treatment. Samples of tissue taken from surgery are analyzed and given a Recurrence Score, a number between zero and 100 that tells doctors how likely it is for an individual’s cancer to recur. A low Recurrence Score (between zero and 18) means a lower chance of the cancer returning; a high Recurrence Score (above 31) means a higher chance.

Oncotype DX is currently only recommended for use in ductal carcinoma in situ (DCIS) and invasive cancer contained to the breast. Multiple studies, including this one, are asking whether Oncotype may also be used for node-positive cancers.

http://www.lbbc.org/Understanding-Breast-Cancer/Breast-Cancer-News/Oncotype-DX-Potentially-Useful-in-Node-Positive-Disease

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