Doctor's office
Enter your doctor's name to get office information.
Find labs in your network
Enter your primary care doctor's name to find labs in your network.
Find urgent care centers in your network
Enter your primary care doctor's name to find urgent care centers in your network.
Driving Directions
Update Information
Forgot Password

Please enter your e-mail address.

Sharp Health News

Sharp participates in ‘breakthrough’ breast cancer study

Oct. 23, 2017

Sharp participates in ‘breakthrough’ breast cancer study

Sharp HealthCare is part of a clinical trial for breast cancer treatment that is showing so much promise in reducing tumors that the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has deemed the new drug a “breakthrough therapy.”

This designation is granted only to new therapies that show early evidence of working significantly better than existing treatments for a serious disease. It also sets the therapy on a fast track for review and potential approval so that it can get to patients as soon as possible.

The investigational therapy treats women with a particular type of advanced, aggressive breast cancer. Breast cancer cells in these women have a gene mutation that makes an excess of a protein called HER2 (human epidermal growth factor receptor 2), which promotes the growth of cancer cells.

About 1 in every 5 women with breast cancer has a type that is HER2-positive. Many of these tumors advance to a point where available therapies can no longer control the disease. The cancer often spreads to other parts of the body.

Currently known as DS-8201, the investigational treatment is part of a novel class of drugs called antibody-drug conjugates. It works by attaching chemotherapy to an antibody designed to only bond to cells containing the HER2 protein. Once the drug combination attaches to a breast cancer cell, the chemotherapy is released inside the cell to kill it.

This type of targeted treatment may also reduce the side effects from traditional chemotherapy that can affect both cancerous and noncancerous cells.

“This is a very promising therapy for patients with this type of breast cancer,” says Dr. Charles Redfern, a medical oncologist at Sharp Memorial Hospital, who, along with his colleague, medical oncologist Dr. Jennifer Fisher, co-authored a recent paper on preliminary results from the clinical trial. “We’re excited about the possibilities for this therapy.”

Sharp HealthCare is the only health system in the western part of the United States participating in phase 1 of the clinical trial. Patients have travelled from as far away as Canada to participate in the study at Sharp, says Dr. Redfern.

Larger-scale phase 2 trials are expected to start soon to better understand the effectiveness of this investigational treatment.

Learn more about cancer clinical trials available at Sharp HealthCare.

For the news media: To talk with Dr. Charles Redfern about breast cancer clinical trials at Sharp HealthCare for an upcoming story, contact Erica Carlson, senior public relations specialist, at

You might also like:

Choose the doctor who's right for you.

At Sharp, we make it easy to find an exceptional doctor — right where you live and work.

All Categories
Contact Sharp HealthCare
Call us


If this is a life- or limb-threatening emergency, please call 911 immediately.

Email us

Please do not use this form to convey personal or medical information.

How would you like to be contacted?
Date of birth

Find other numbers

View our phone directory

What's This?

These important numbers are located on your billing statement.

Find your Sharp Rees-Stealy account number

Find your Sharp Rees-Stealy account number

Find your Sharp hospital account number

Find your Sharp hospital account number

Find your SharpCare account number

Find your SharpCare account number
What's This?

Many surgery and procedure names sound similar. If possible, please provide the current procedure terminology (CPT) code, which can be found on the order from your doctor.

If you cannot provide the CPT code, please contact your doctor's office for the CPT or a detailed description of services.

Lung Cancer Screening

Should you get a lung cancer screening? Answer a few simple questions to find out.

Have you ever smoked cigarettes?
Are you on Medicare or a Medicare HMO?