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Breast Cancer Breakthrough in Cornwall

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Published by the Pirate FM News Team at 7:02am 10th December 2012. (Updated at 7:50am 10th December 2012)

Tests in Cornwall could add months to the lives of women fighting breast cancer.

Pirate FM has been told tests at Treliske have been key in developing a new drug.

Trials show Perjeta is more effective than chemotherapy or Herceptin for treating those classed as HER2 positive - which affects one in four sufferers.

Doctor Rachel Greg from Breakthrough Breast Cancer told us it can slow down the disease: "Patients who receive this drug are able to significantly extend the amount of time they're able to control the growth of the cancer and prevent the cancer from growing and further by about six months.

"It could allow patients to spend much more time with their family or friends. To get them to Christmas, get them to their next birthday and obviously that's something that's really important to breast cancer patients.

Doctor Duncan Wheatley specialises in breast cancer at the Royal Cornwall Hospital. He said: "There are very little side effects for most patients. They can live a normal life and their cancer stays shrunk for meaningful periods. Normally we see it's a few weeks or a couple of months longer - but this is a lot longer. They live longer and they can live normal lives."

Once the correct paperwork has been cleared, the new drug pertuzumab could be available for use in early 2013.

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