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Two new treatments for breast cancer registered in NZ

Two new treatments for advanced HER2-positive breast cancer registered in New Zealand
First line treatment PERJETA® and second line treatment KADCYLA® extend and improve the quality of life of patients with advanced HER2-positive breast cancer
14 October 2013
For immediate release

Two new treatments for HER2-positive advanced breast cancer developed by Roche Products have received New Zealand registration from Medsafe.1,2

PERJETA (pertuzumab) is a personalised medicine which is used in combination with Herceptin® (trastuzumab) and chemotherapy for advanced or recurrent, unresectable HER2-positive breast cancer.
KADCYLA (trastuzumab emtansine) is the first antibody drug conjugate for the treatment of advanced HER2-positive breast cancer.

Stuart Knight, General Manager, Roche Products (New Zealand) Ltd says that PERJETA and KADCYLA are innovative new treatments for advanced HER2-positive breast cancer.
“In New Zealand, breast cancer is the third most common cancer and the most common cancer in women. It is the cause of death for more than 650 Kiwi women each year,” says Mr Knight.
Roche Products has been at the forefront of treatment for HER2-positive breast cancer for many years.
“For those with advanced HER2-positive breast cancer, Roche’s Herceptin was a ground-breaking treatment when it was first approved for use in 1998.
“However, new therapies are needed to further delay disease progression, relieve cancer-related symptoms and improve survival,” says Mr Knight.
Roche’s continued research in this area, over the past 15 years, has led to the development of these new treatments.
“Both PERJETA and KADCYLA have the potential to significantly extend and improve the quality of life of women with advanced HER2-positive breast cancer.
“We’re pleased that these treatments are now available in New Zealand,” adds Mr Knight.

PERJETA helps extend the lives of patients with advanced HER2-positive breast cancer
PERJETA is an example of Roche’s personalised healthcare approach. It targets the HER2 receptor, a protein found in increased numbers on HER2-positive breast cancer cells. When the HER2 receptor pairs with another HER receptor, multiple signals are sent to the cell to grow and multiply, which is why HER2 plays such an important role in breast cancer growth.3
PERJETA is the first medicine designed to stop the HER2 receptor from pairing with other HER receptors.3
A large international study called CLEOPATRA has shown that for patients who received PERJETA, Herceptin and chemotherapy:

The length of time before their disease progressed significantly increased to an average of 18.5 months compared to 12.4 months for those who received Herceptin and chemotherapy alone4,5
Significantly more patients were alive at 3 years compared to those who received Herceptin and chemotherapy.5

KADCYLA extends survival and maintains quality of life in late-stage HER2-positive breast cancer
KADCYLA is used to treat people with advanced HER2-positive breast cancer who have previously been treated with Herceptin and chemotherapy.2 It is the first in a new class of medicines called antibody-drug conjugates (ADC) which target certain types of cancer cells and deliver chemotherapy directly to them.
In a large international study called EMILIA, when compared with the current standard of care (lapatinib and capecitabine):

KADCYLA improved the overall survival of patients with advanced HER2-positive breast cancer by 6 months6
Patients receiving KADCYLA experienced a 32 percent reduction in the risk of dying6
KADCYLA significantly delayed disease progression by over 3 months6
Patients experienced fewer serious side effects.7

Both PERJETA and KADCYLA are unfunded medicines.

About HER2-postive breast cancer
HER2-positive breast cancer occurs when breast cancer cells have too many copies of the HER2 protein. It is an aggressive type of the disease and is likely to progress more quickly than cancer that is not HER2-positive. Around one in five women diagnosed with breast cancer will have HER2-positive breast cancer.8
About Roche
Roche Products (New Zealand) Ltd is the pharmaceutical division of Roche in New Zealand, and is the leading provider of oncology medicines in New Zealand.

Headquartered in Basel, Switzerland, Roche is a leader in research-focused healthcare with combined strengths in pharmaceuticals and diagnostics. Roche is the world’s largest biotech company with truly differentiated medicines in oncology, virology, inflammation, metabolism and CNS. Roche is also the world leader in in-vitro diagnostics, tissue-based cancer diagnostics and a pioneer in diabetes management. Roche’s personalised healthcare strategy aims at providing medicines and diagnostic tools that enable tangible improvements in the health, quality of life and survival of patients. In 2009, Roche had over 80,000 employees worldwide and invested almost 10 billion Swiss francs in R&D. The Group posted sales of 49.1 billion Swiss francs. Genentech, United States, is a wholly owned member of the Roche Group. Roche has a majority stake in Chugai Pharmaceutical, Japan. For more information:


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