Chips Predict  Tumor Aggression/Treament

Chips predict breast cancer outcome

Genetic profiling could help tailor treatment to tumour.

31 January 2002 TOM CLARKE

One in ten women in the United States and Britain get breast cancer; half die from it. How tumours look tells oncologists little about which ones might spread. So most women receive a toxic combination of hormone treatment and chemotherapy, in case cancer cells lurk elsewhere in their bodies.

Yet only about 20% of women have tumours aggressive enough to require this worst-case-scenario therapy. "The rest would be cured by radiotherapy and surgery alone," says cancer geneticist Samuel Aparicio of the University of Cambridge, UK.

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