Jun 3, 2018

Good news for women with breast cancer: Many don’t need chemo

A breast cancer patient receives a chemotherapy drip. Photo: Chris Hondros/Getty Images

"Many women with early-stage breast cancer who would receive chemotherapy under current standards do not actually need it, according to a major international study that is expected to quickly change medical treatment," N.Y. Times health and medicine reporter Denise Grady reports.

One big finding: "The study found that gene tests on tumor samples were able to identify women who could safely skip chemotherapy and take only a drug that blocks the hormone estrogen or stops the body from making it."

Dr. Ingrid A. Mayer of Vanderbilt University Medical Center, an author of the study: "We can spare thousands and thousands of women from getting toxic treatment that really wouldn’t benefit them ... This is very powerful. It really changes the standard of care.”

  • "The hormone-blocking drug tamoxifen and related medicines, called endocrine therapy, have become an essential part of treatment for most women because they lower the risks of recurrence, new breast tumors and death from the disease."
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Older candidates take the lead on social media

Illustration: Eniola Odetunde/Axios

Michael Bloomberg, Bernie Sanders and Joe Biden — all close to 80 — are pushing the boundaries on social media, while their younger Democratic presidential rivals are comparatively staying out of the fray.

The big picture: President Trump's unexpected rise to political power has shown Democrats and world leaders the power of harnessing popular internet culture to get elected.

South Korea and Italy step up emergency measures as coronavirus cases jump

Data: The Center for Systems Science and Engineering at Johns Hopkins, the CDC, and China's Health Ministry. Note: China numbers are for the mainland only and U.S. numbers include repatriated citizens.

The novel coronavirus has spread to more nations as South Korea and Italy step up emergency measures in their countries amid rising case numbers on Sunday.

The big picture: COVID-19 has killed at least 2,462 people and infected almost 79,000 others, mostly in mainland China. South Korea increased the infectious disease alert to red, the highest possible, as its case numbers jumped to 602 and the death toll to five. Italy's government announced emergency measures, with several towns in the north effectively placed in lockdown, as it confirmed two deaths and infections rose to 79.

Go deeperArrowUpdated 4 hours ago - Health

Bernie Sanders wins Nevada caucus

Democratic presidential candidate Sen. Bernie Sanders waves to supporters at a campaign rally on Friday in Las Vegas. Photo: Mario Tama/Getty Images

Sen. Bernie Sanders is projected to handily win the Nevada Democratic primary caucus, becoming the clear frontrunner among 2020 Democratic presidential primary election candidates.

Why it matters: Nevada is the first state with a diverse population to hold a nominating contest, highlighting candidates' abilities to connect with voters of color — particularly Latino voters.

Go deeperArrowUpdated 4 hours ago - Politics & Policy