Breast cancer treatment gets boost

The Guardian David Batty 19 April 2012

The treatment of breast cancer could be revolutionised with patients offered more accurate diagnoses and better-targeted treatments after a study in which scientists genetically mapped the disease. The research found that rather than being a single disease, breast cancer can be classified into 10 distinct types. It also identified several new genes that determine the aggressiveness of the cancer. The breakthrough had been hailed by charities as a step towards the “holy grail” of tailoring treatments to the needs of individual patients. The findings of the research, in which scientists examined 2,000 tumours in the largest ever genetic study of breast cancer tissue, could help predict patients’ chances of survival more accurately and lead to the development of more effective drugs for each cancer type.

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