Breast Cancer Awareness Month 2019

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This year BIG is celebrating its 20th anniversary. What better time than the month of October to spread our message of hope and progress?

Linked to thousands of hospitals and tens of thousands breast cancer experts through 57 academic research groups, BIG is the largest international network (over 50 countries across 6 continents) dedicated solely to breast cancer research. Since 1999, more than 95,000 patients have participated in BIG’s clinical trials.

Research is essential to help us better understand breast cancer.

Much of BIG’s research is considered to be landmark, introducing particularly innovative designs, contributing to significant breakthroughs, or paving the way towards more personalised treatment of the disease.

Over the course of this breast cancer awareness month, we will present these studies that have already made an impact, or that we expect to in the future:

    The results of this study could influence how 2 in 5 women with breast cancer are treated by identifying which women could be spared unnecessary radiation therapy after surgery in the future
    POSITIVE represents a unique opportunity to allow young women who have had hormone sensitive breast cancer to temporarily interrupt their treatment and try to conceive.
    The AURORA research programme aims to better understand the molecular characteristics and evolution of recurrent or metastatic breast cancer, in the hope of treating more effectively, and possibly blocking the disease in the future.
    The international randomised SOFT & TEXT clinical trials offer a new post-operative treatment option for young women with hormone-sensitive early breast cancer. 
    The APHINITY trial found that adjuvant pertuzumab in combination with trastuzumab and chemotherapy in patients significantly improved the rates of invasive-disease-free survival among patients with HER2-positive, operable breast cancer when it was added to trastuzumab and chemotherapy.
    The MINDACT trial found that 46% of patients identified as high-risk for cancer recurrence based on traditional factors were identified as low risk when adding the MammaPrint test.  This means that many patients who in the past would definitely have received chemotherapy, might be spared such treatment and its side effects in the future. It represents a large academic effort towards de-escalating therapies.
    The ALTTO and NeoALTTO trials represent a valuable resource for translational research as well as large scale academic collaboration. 
  • HERA
    The HERA trial indicated that one year of treatment with trastuzumab had a significant and sustained benefit in preventing cancer recurrence, contributing to a new standard treatment for HER+ breast cancer.
  • Aromatase Inhibitors
    The BIG 1-97, BIG 2-97 and BIG 1-98 trials added to the body of evidence that aromatase inhibitors could be used as a safe alternative to tamoxifen.

Thanks to BIG’s 57 Member Groups and the team at BIG Headquarters, we can proudly say that we have dedicated 20 years of collective commitment to collaboration, innovation and leadership in facilitating and accelerating breast cancer research. Our aim is to deliver the best in breast cancer treatment for optimal patient outcomes.

More to explore

Interview with Professor Beat Thürlimann

Interview with Prof Beat Thürlimann

The 17th St. Gallen International Breast Cancer Conference will take place virtually from 17 to 21 March 2021. Held every two years, the congress brings