Trastuzumab is a type of targeted therapy drug. It is a monoclonal antibody that binds to the protein HER2, which is found in large amounts on some cancer cells and causes them to grow. Trastuzumab blocks the activity of HER2 and triggers a type of immune reaction that kills cells that have a lot of HER2.
Use in Cancer
Trastuzumab is approved to be used alone or with other drugs to treat:
- Breast cancer that is HER2 positive (HER2+). It is used in patients with:
- Hormone receptor-negative or high-risk cancer. It is given:
- Metastatic cancer. It is given:
- With paclitaxel as first-line treatment for metastatic cancer; or
- Alone in patients who have received at least one chemotherapy treatment for metastatic cancer.
- Stomach adenocarcinoma or gastroesophageal junction adenocarcinoma (a rare type of esophageal cancer) that has metastasized. It is used with cisplatin and either capecitabine or fluorouracil in patients whose cancer is HER2+.
Trastuzumab is also available in three different forms, trastuzumab and hyaluronidase-oysk, pertuzumab, trastuzumab, and hyaluronidase-zzxf, and ado-trastuzumab emtansine. For more information, see the Drug Information Summaries for Trastuzumab and Hyaluronidase-oysk, Pertuzumab, Trastuzumab, and Hyaluronidase-zzxf, and Ado-Trastuzumab Emtansine.
Trastuzumab is also being studied in the treatment of other types of cancer.
More About Trastuzumab
Definition from the NCI Drug Dictionary - Detailed scientific definition and other names for this drug.
MedlinePlus Information on Trastuzumab - A lay language summary of important information about this drug that may include the following:
- warnings about this drug,
- what this drug is used for and how it is used,
- what you should tell your doctor before using this drug,
- what you should know about this drug before using it,
- other drugs that may interact with this drug, and
- possible side effects.
Drugs are often studied to find out if they can help treat or prevent conditions other than the ones they are approved for. This patient information sheet applies only to approved uses of the drug. However, much of the information may also apply to unapproved uses that are being studied.
Research Results and Related Resources
Clinical Trials Accepting Patients
Find Clinical Trials for Trastuzumab - Check for trials from NCI's list of cancer clinical trials now accepting patients.