The Prosigna test

A chance to avoid chemotherapy for breast cancer

After surgery to remove breast cancer, the oncologist will assess whether the patient should undergo subsequent chemotherapy or not. This evaluation normally takes place on the basis of clinical-pathological factors (lymph node status, tumour size and stage, age of the patient, etc.) and immunohistochemical factors (cell proliferation markers, expression of hormonal receptors, etc.).

The Prosigna™ prognostic testing kit offers the oncologist additional useful information which can be useful for identifying patients for whom chemotherapy can be avoided. Prosigna™ is the only test available on the national territory, therefore it does not require samples to be sent abroad. It uses genetic expression analysis to detect patients with tumours having a low chance of recurrence in the 10 years following surgery. In this way, it offers additional information to be added to the clinical-pathological and immunohistochemical information, which is useful for physicians to identify patients who can avoid post-surgical chemotherapy within a context of personalized therapeutic choices. The NEMESI (BMC Cancer, 2012) clinical trial, conducted by Italian researchers, has highlighted how it was possible to avoid chemotherapy in 25% of cases, and thus its side effects were also able to be avoided.

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