Immunotherapy is a breakthrough cancer therapy that is transforming the way many malignancies are treated. While traditional approaches such as surgery, radiation therapy and chemotherapy are more commonly relied upon to treat breast cancer, immunotherapy is showing promise. The Federal Drug Administration (FDA) approved its first immunotherapy treatment for breast cancer in March 2019.
What is breast cancer immunotherapy?
Immunotherapy enhances the immune system’s ability to recognize and attack specific types of cancer cells. Currently, breast cancer immunotherapy is approved for certain patients with late-stage triple negative breast cancer, a less common malignancy that often spreads faster and is more difficult to treat than non-triple negative breast cancers. This type of immunotherapy involves two drugs – Tecentriq (atezolizumab) and Abraxane (nab-paclitaxel), a combination that has shown to be effective in some patients with triple negative breast cancer who test positive for the PD-L1 protein.
Breast cancer immunotherapy at Moffitt Cancer Center
Patients of Moffitt’s Don & Erika Wallace Comprehensive Breast Program benefit from the combined expertise of physicians from multiple specialties who all focus exclusively on breast cancers. We offer a full spectrum of diagnostics, supportive care and clinical treatment options, from chemotherapy, radiation therapy and robotic-assisted surgery to the newest therapies.
Moffitt stands at the forefront of breast cancer research and is actively exploring the capabilities of immunotherapy for patients with breast cancer. Our physicians have pioneered immunotherapy trials using viruses to treat early triple negative breast cancer and developed vaccines to administer prior to chemotherapy and following chemotherapy for patients with HER2 breast cancer. We have these and other trials, which are only available at Moffitt Cancer Center. This extensive portfolio of immunotherapy research initiatives and clinical trials contributes to our designation as a National Cancer Institute Comprehensive Cancer Center. Moffitt is the only cancer center based in Florida to hold this designation.
Contact Moffitt at 1-888-663-3488 or submit a new patient registration form online if you would like to speak with a Moffitt oncologist about your breast cancer treatment options, including immunotherapy. We welcome patients with or without referrals.