EAZ171 Clinical Trial

Studying peripheral neuropathy in Black women with breast cancer

The EAZ171 study is designed to help learn why Black women experience more neuropathy and which drugs are best at reducing it.

We have two goals:

  1. To determine which women are most at-risk for this side effect of neuropathy based on their DNA.
  2. To determine which regularly prescribed chemotherapy treatment, docetaxel or paclitaxel, will result in lessening the side effect that causes nerve damage, known as peripheral neuropathy, for Black women with breast cancer.

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Why is this study needed?

Recent research shows that patients of African ancestry who take chemotherapy drugs such as docetaxel or paclitaxel have a higher risk for neuropathy.

Symptoms of this side effect most often appear in the hands and feet and include:

  • Numbness, tingling, and pain
  • Muscle weakness
  • Sensitivity to temperature

These symptoms are collectively called neuropathy. Through this trial, we can identify the better treatment specific to women of African ancestry with breast cancer to reduce neuropathy.

Why is it important for Black women to participate in this clinical trial?

Because of past wrongs done by researchers and a lack of trials focused on patients of African ancestry, Black patients are strikingly under-represented within clinical trials.

As a result, our knowledge of cancer treatments is based mostly on the information gathered from white patients. Our research shows that Black patients have a much higher risk of experiencing side effects from chemotherapy, especially neuropathy.

Neuropathy causes doctors to lower or even stop chemotherapy doses in their patients. In turn, breast cancer comes back (recurs) more often in Black patients than white patients, resulting in lower survival rates among Black patients.

Neuropathy is painful, can impact quality of life, and is sometimes permanent.

The American Society of Clinical Oncology considers neuropathy caused by chemotherapy to be one of the three most important survivorship issues impacting cancer patients.

This study is closed to accrual. We expect all patients to meet the two-year follow-up period and study results to begin to be reported in late 2023.


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