“I was keen to go on a clinical trial. I wanted to try new cancer treatments and hopefully help future generations.”
A study looking at why some breast cancers respond better than others to the drugs letrozole or anastrozole
Please note - this trial is no longer recruiting patients. We hope to add results when they are available.
Some people may have breast cancer that is too large or unsuitable for surgery. Or there may be a medical reason why surgery may not be the best first treatment. In these situations, if your breast cancer is
In this study, researchers will look at blood and tissue samples from people taking a type of hormone therapy called an aromatase inhibitor. The drugs they are looking at are called letrozole and anastrozole. They will test the samples to see whether the gene and protein changes that happen as a result of taking these drugs can be linked to how much the cancer shrinks. This will help them see if there is any way of predicting who will benefit from these drugs, and who might not.
You will not get any direct benefit from taking part in such a study, and it is unlikely to change your treatment plan in any way. But the results of the study will be used to help other people with breast cancer in the future.
Who can enter
You may be able to enter this study if you
- Are under the care of doctors at the Edinburgh Breast Unit
- Have breast cancer that is sensitive to the hormone oestrogen (oestrogen receptor positive breast cancer)
- Are due to start a type of hormone therapy called an aromatase inhibitor to shrink your tumour before surgery for breast cancer
You cannot enter this study if you
- Have a rare type of breast cancer called inflammatory breast cancer
- Have already had any treatment for breast cancer (including medication as part of another trial if there is any chance some of the drug could still be in your body)
- Would be due to have radiotherapy,
immunotherapyor chemotherapy at the same time as taking part in this study
- Have any other medical or mental health condition that would stop you taking part
This study will recruit 500 people.
Everyone taking part will give 1 or 2 blood and tissue samples (biopsies). You have the first study biopsy at the same time as having a marker put into your breast that will guide the surgeon if and when you have surgery. This marker is not part of the study, and is put in place in case your treatment shrinks your cancer so much that the surgeon cannot feel it. You have the second biopsy 3 months later. The study team will also measure your breast cancer using an ultrasound scan.
By agreeing to take part, you are also giving the team permission to study tissue you had removed when you were diagnosed with breast cancer.
You will visit the hospital to give your blood and have your biopsy
- Two weeks after you start treatment
- After 3 months of treatment, or during your surgery
Your breast may be bruised and feel sore for a few days after your biopsy. You may also have a small bruise where you gave blood samples.
How to join a clinical trial
Please note: In order to join a trial you will need to discuss it with your doctor, unless otherwise specified.
Professor JM Dixon
Breakthrough Breast Cancer
National Institute for Health Research Cancer Research Network (NCRN)
University of Edinburgh