Mind and Body

Common Breast Cancer Drug May Protect Against Lung Cancer



The drug most commonly prescribed for treating breast cancer recurrence, Tamoxifen, has also shown to reduce the risk of death from lung cancer, according to a study published in the journal Cancer on Monday, Agence France-Presse reported.

Researchers based the study on data from 6,655 women previously diagnosed with breast cancer from 1980 to 2003 from Switzerland's Geneva Cancer Registry. Almost half the women were given anti-estrogen drugs like Tamoxifen.

The results showed that within the group of women taking the anti-estrogen drug, there were 87 percent fewer deaths compared to the general population.

"Our results support the hypothesis that there is a hormonal influence on lung cancer, which has been suggested by findings such as the presence of estrogen and progesterone receptors in a substantial proportion of lung cancers," said Elisabetta Rapiti, lead author of the study.

"If prospective studies confirm our results and find that anti-estrogen agents improve lung cancer outcomes, this could have substantial implications for clinical practice," she said.