The new drug is Herceptin, and it is already used to treat advanced cancer. In the studies reported in the October issue of the New England Journal of Medicine, women suffering from an early, aggressive form of breast cancer, who were given Herceptin along with chemotherapy, saw their rates of recurrence drop by 50 percent.
However, researchers say Herceptin targets only diseased cells in a particular deadly form of cancer and may weaken a heart muscle. But doctors add that the benefits of Herceptin far outweigh the risk of the cancer.
Researchers say a laboratory test can identify which patients might respond to Herceptin.
Listen to our Health report for details.