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HIV drug could help breast cancer patients

Category: HIV monitoring/Treatment/Testing/Post Diagnos

Individuals who have undergone blood tests that detected biomarkers indicating the presence of breast cancer tumors could have a new treatment option related to drugs originally designed for people whose STD tests came out positive for HIV, according to a study published in the Journal of the National Cancer Institute.

Previous studies have shown the drug, Nelfinavir, which inhibits a type of protein in patients who have taken HIV-confirming STD tests, can help reduce the expansion of some types of cancers. However, researchers say their experiments on mice are the first to demonstrate its implications for patients whose blood tests for breast cancer brought up unfortunate results.

"With a relatively low toxicity profile and much available information on its drug-drug interactions and on pharmacokinetics, Nelfinavir is ready for clinical testing in HER2 breast cancer patients," wrote the study authors, before noting that their findings have "important implications in the development of Nelfinavir and its analogs as new anticancer agents."

This is not the only recent study showing that medications for HIV could also be used to treat breast cancer. In July, scientists at Thomas Jefferson University said HIV drugs helped treat patients with triple negative breast cancer, which is particularly difficult to survive, reports the Philadelphia Inquirer.

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