Breast Cancer Biological Therapy

We employ a newer method to attack your breast cancer cells.

In some cases it’s possible to use your own immune system in the fight against breast cancer. Biological therapy uses the body’s immune system or similar compounds to attack cancer cells. This type of therapy may have fewer side effects than breast cancer treatments such as chemotherapy, but it doesn’t work for all types of breast cancer.

Our medical oncologists can discuss whether this newer therapy may be an option to treat your breast cancer.

Targeted biological therapies for breast cancer

We tailor biological therapies to work against specific types of breast cancer, which is why they are known as targeted. For example, we use some therapies on patients who have the HER2 gene in their breast cancer cells -- known as HER2-positive. We use different therapies in patients without that gene -- HER2 negative.

Genetic testing can identify particular types of breast cancer that respond well to targeted biological therapies.

There are three main types of biological therapies:

  • Antibodies that use the own immune system to attack cancer cells. This is also known as immunotherapy.
  • Lab-made compounds that are similar to antibodies and are injected as a drug.
  • Molecular drugs that interrupt the signals cancer cells rely on to grow.

Biological therapy clinical trials for breast cancer

Our breast cancer patients at times have access to clinical trials that investigate new biological therapies or other treatments. Talk with your doctor about whether a clinical trial might be right for you.

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Clinical Trials

Cancer Institute