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Advances in health and medicine.
Marjorie Bekaert Thomas
Advances in health and medicine.
Breast Cancer Channel
Reported April 2, 2012

Vaccine Fights Breast Cancer Recurrence

SAN ANTONIO, TX (Ivanhoe Newswire) -- Conquering breast cancer is not an easy feat. Once it’s beaten, there’s always a chance it could come back. Now doctors are working on a new way to help breast cancer survivors win the fight once and for all.

Kellie Trombitas is a fighter. It took 33 rounds of radiation for her to knock-out breast cancer over 10 tough months.

"Chemo takes a lot out of you. It just makes you sick," Kellie Trombitas told Ivanhoe.

Now she’s excited to be cancer free, but Kellie still has concerns.

"In the back of your mind you’re always thinking, is it going to come back?" Kellie said.

So she’s taking part in a clinical trial to test E-75, a vaccine to help protect breast cancer survivors from recurrence.

E-75 is a part of the Her-2 neu protein. It helps stimulate t-cells to attack cancer cells. In trials, women injected with the vaccine saw a 50% reduction in recurrence. The drug Herceptin can do the same but in a different way. Only 20% of breast cancer survivors, those with high levels of Her-2, can take Herceptin. E-75 developer George Peoples says three times as many survivors could benefit from his vaccine. It targets women like Kellie, who have lower levels of Her-2.

"It allows us to use the vaccine for patients who are otherwise not eligible to receive Herceptin," George E. Peoples, M.D., FACS, director of the Cancer Vaccine Development Program and chief surgical oncology at SAMMC, said.

As for Kellie, she’s still getting stronger, fighting to keep cancer from making a comeback.

Doctor peoples says one day the vaccine could be used to fight lung, prostate and ovarian cancers that also express the Her-2 protein. Recruiting for the final round of trials for E-75 is underway right now.

700 to one-thousand participants in dozens of sites across the country are needed. To find out more about enrolling in the trial go to  MORE

More Information

Click here for additional research on Vaccine Fights Breast Cancer Recurrence

Click here for Ivanhoe's full-length interview with Dr. George Peoples

If this story or any other Ivanhoe story has impacted your life or prompted you or someone you know to seek or change treatments, please let us know by contacting Andrew Mcintosh at

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For the nearest FDA-certified mammography provider, or to check the status of your imaging center, call the NCI's CIS at (800) 4-CANCER.

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