Roche’s multibillion-dollar breast-cancer treatment Herceptin may be boosted by the addition of an experimental drug, according to its partner ImmunoGen, which develops targeted cancer therapeutics.
T-DM1 is a second-generation treatment, which combines Herceptin (trastuzumab) with an ImmunoGen-developed tumour-killing chemotherapy payload.
The Genentech unit at Roche is to start a study of T-DM1, which has not yet been approved for use, in May 2010. An adjuvant trial is also in the planning stages.
The goal of the trials to see is T-DM1 can one day replace Herceptin as the leading treatment for women with certain breast cancers.
Herceptin global sales totalled $3.8 billion (£2.3 billion) in the first nine months of 2009 and $4.7 billion in sales in 2008.
Copyright Press Association 2009