Scientists in Edinburgh, Scotland, have discovered a gene which causes certain HER2 cancers (those producing a protein named human epidermal growth factor receptor 2) to grow. Current treatment for HER2 breast cancer includes medicines which target the protein HER2, like Herceptin (trastuzumab). These treatments don’t always work, so a new treatment would be important.

The new research indicates that a protein called C35 promotes the development and spreading of breast cancer. This protein provides a target for potential new treatments suitable for certain breast cancer patients. The study was published in the British Journal of Cancer (e-publication date 13 July 2010).

The Daily Telegraph reports that a new treatment to stop HER2 cancer from spreading around the body is in the early stages of development.