Herceptin was the first HER2-targeted therapy for breast cancer. Herceptin is a monoclonal antibody that binds to HER2 receptors present on the surface of HER2-positive tumour cells, blocking them from receiving growth signals and flagging them for destruction by the immune system.
In the US, Europe and many other countries Herceptin is approved in combination with chemotherapy for the adjuvant (post-surgery) treatment of HER2-positive early breast cancer, first-line treatment of advanced HER2-positive breast cancer and first-line treatment of advanced HER2-positive gastric cancer. In Europe and other countries, it is also approved in combination with chemotherapy for the neoadjuvant (pre-surgery) treatment of HER2-positive early breast cancer.
Herceptin can be given as an intravenous (IV) infusion or as a subcutaneous injection (SC). The SC formulation of Herceptin, which is approved in Europe and many other countries, can be administered in two to five minutes via an injection under the skin.