HER2−, HR+ early breast cancer: are anthracyclines necessary?

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  • Previous data suggest that cardiotoxic anthracyclines (doxorubicin [Adriamycin] & epirubicin [Ellence]) may have limited value in human epidermal growth factor receptor 2 (HER2)-negative early breast cancer (EBC).
  • This phase 3 trial in patients with HER2-negative, hormone receptor-positive (HR+) EBC found that anthracycline-free chemotherapy was as effective as anthracycline-containing regimens using the prevalence of circulating tumor cells (CTCs), which indicate poor prognosis.
Why this matters
  • Although this study suggests that anthracycline-free regimens can be used, the authors call for efficacy analysis using full survival analysis.
Study design
  • Open-label, phase 3 study of 3642 patients with EBC, randomly assigned to 6 cycles anthracycline-containing chemotherapy vs anthracycline-free chemotherapy.
  • Main outcome measure was CTC levels using US Food and...