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Targeted treatment - world leading cancer care

The complexity and range of different types of cancer demands a range of different treatment options. Cancer can be operated on, irradiated or treated with drugs, including chemotherapy, hormone therapy and monoclonal antibodies. All of these methods aim to kill cancerous cells, stop them growing or prevent them spreading.

Roche pioneered the development of monoclonal antibodies, which target proteins in or on cancer cells, leaving other healthy cells alone. This can increase the effectiveness of traditional chemotherapy without adding to chemotherapy side-effects such as nausea or hair loss. We are currently testing a novel armed antibody, which delivers chemotherapy direct to the receptors associated with a tumour.

Our company has brought five cancer treatments with proven survival benefits to patients. Today we are the leading provider of cancer treatments in the UK and the world, and our cancer portfolio helps make us the world’s largest producer of biopharmaceuticals.

Roche provides treatments for metastatic breast cancer, colorectal cancer and non-Hodgkin lymphoma. Products for anaemia, nausea and bone weakening also tackle the supportive care issues associated with cancer or its treatment, which can affect a patient’s quality of life.

In the UK, Roche’s pharmaceutical teams work with healthcare professionals and the NHS to make these innovative products widely available. Our aim is to ensure that all eligible patients have access to the most appropriate treatment in their fight against cancer.

Increasingly, our diagnostics and pharmaceutical work will go hand in hand to help clinicians decide on treatment. We are proud to offer the world's first pharmacogenetic microarray-based test approved for clinical use – the cobas® AmpliChip® CYP450. This innovation assesses an individual’s ability to metabolise, and therefore benefit from certain drugs, including some breast cancer treatment.

Our tissue diagnostics business also provides a test that measures the presence of a growth factor in breast cancer, identifying patients who are likely to respond to therapy that specifically targets this.

In colorectal cancer, the TheraScreen K-RAS Mutation test identifies tumour-specific mutations that are an indication of disease prognosis. This test also helps doctors identify patients who will benefit from a specific cancer therapy.

To find out more about Roche’s portfolio, please go to Products and Services.