When I was diagnosed with Triple Negative Breast Cancer (TNBC) and told I had two years to live, eight years ago, I asked my doctors, “Why isn’t there a viable therapy for Triple Negative Breast Cancer? Is it because it only represents 15% of breast cancers? Is it because the mortality rate is so high, and the patients die very quickly? Is it because TNBC over-indexes among African American women? Why doesn’t TNBC get the attention from pharmaceutical companies for research investment?” It probably was all of the above at the time.
A Triple Negative Breast Cancer diagnosis is devastating. To date, there have been no TNBC-specific treatment options and TNBC is the only breast cancer sub-type that does not have a drug to prevent recurrence. According to the only national study conducted for TNBC and Black women (Lia Scott, Lee Mobley, Tzy-Mey Kuo, and Dora Il’yasova, CANCER), African American women have 2.3 times higher odds of being diagnosed with triple negative breast cancer. And, among women who were diagnosed with breast cancer, those diagnosed at late stages were 69% more likely to have triple negative.
Metastatic (Stage 4) Triple Negative Breast Cancer (mTNBC) is an aggressive cancer with one of the poorest prognoses due to a lack of existing treatment options. The 5-year survival rate is less than 30%. I have too often seen the debilitating impact on the quality of life for my Breasties (the name I call my Breast Cancer sisters) with late-stage cancer who have had an extensive treatment history.
Well, someone at Immunomedics must have heard me whining and went to work to find a solution and I am thankful that I am blessed to be here to see this day.
Trodelvy from Immunomedics is here! This new drug will give the precious gift of time to my metastatic TNBC Sisters. As an Ambassador for the Immunomedics Live Humanly Campaign, a social media platform for cancer warriors and survivors, I’ve been blessed to meet several Breasties who participated in the clinical trial research and watched them go from struggling with their disease to thriving and living their best lives. I watched Trodelvy give them light and hope and the most precious gift of time.
Trodelvy is the first FDA-approved ADC treatment option for patients with mTNBC who have received at least two prior therapies for metastatic disease. This new treatment option brings hope to our mTNBC Breasties and their loved ones. Trodelvy allows for our warriors to maintain a consistent treatment regimen for a longer period of time, with relatively manageable tolerability, giving them a good quality of life.
“The Triple Negative Breast Cancer community is encouraged by the launch of Trodelvy. Time and hope are precious gifts for our metastatic warriors,” says Hayley Dinerman, Co-Founder and Executive Director, Triple Negative Breast Cancer Foundation.
Remarkably, 7.4% of the Trodelvy clinical trial participants were African American women (as published in NEJM). This may not sound like a lot, but since 2015, the breast cancer drugs approved by the FDA have had 2.5% Black participation. The participation level for Trodelvy clinical trials is unsurpassed and speaks volumes for Immunomedics and their commitment to addressing the specific needs of Black Breast Cancer.
“As a TNBC patient, it was overwhelming to be diagnosed with an aggressive form of breast cancer with no targeted treatment,” says Maimah Karmo, President and Founder, Tigerlily Foundation. “For 14 years, as a patient advocate and leader, I’ve been committed to helping patients get the right treatments when they need it and until now, we have had no treatment for TNBC MBC patients. Thanks to Immunomedics, we now have Trodelvy, which will make a difference in many lives. We are thrilled for the many patients who now have hope and a new treatment option.”
Immunomedics is a change agent and Trodelvy is a game changer. As a very blessed TNBC survivor, I embrace my responsibility to stand up and fight like a girl for my Warrior Sisters. Let this be a message to our TNBC community that many prayers have been answered! Help me spread the word that Trodelvy is readily available and will give my TNBC Breasties the opportunity to live their best lives. Ask your doctor Breasties and get more information at Trodelvy.com.