The chance of chemotherapy being successful for breast cancer patients could be calculated by a blood test. A team at the University of Hull found proteins were twice as likely to be found in patients who were resistant to chemotherapy than those who were successfully treated.
The proteins were found to be resistant to common chemotherapy drugs, including epirubicin and docetaxel. Chemotherapy that does not work can leave a patient with unpleasant side effects and also delay the search for a more effective treatment.
Lead researcher Dr Lynn Cawkwell, says: "A major goal in cancer research is to be able to predict the response of a patient to chemotherapy. Unfortunately, a reliable test has not yet been developed to achieve this. We hope our work can help to bring us a step closer.
"Most of my work uses clinical samples instead of cell lines, thanks to the links I have with oncologists and surgeons at Castle Hill Hospital in Hull. Studying clinical samples gives a more accurate representation of what is relevant in real-life diseases."