JAMES KING-HOLMES / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY JAMES KING-HOLMES / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY
Breast cancer drug. Handful of tamoxifen tablets seen with a backdrop of a woman's torso. Tamoxifen is an anti-oestrogen drug. In 1993 it is the subject of a large-scale clinical trial in the United Kingdom, in the study of breast cancer. This clinical trial is assessing whether tamoxifen can be used to prevent breast cancer in patients at high risk. The female hormone oestrogen is known to promote the growth of a number of breast cancers. The anti-oestrogen properties of tamoxi- fen have, in the past, been used with some success as an hormonal treatment in patients who have already contracted breast cancer. Its use in cancer prevention would be a breakthrough.
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