Trastuzumab is a monoclonal antibody against HER-2/neu, a tyrosine kinase receptor that is overexpressed in HER-2 positive breast cancer. As a result, trastuzumab is an effective treatment for HER-2 positive breast cancer. It can also be used in the treatment of gastric cancer. Finally, patient’s taking trastuzumab are at risk of developing cardiotoxicity.

Key Points

  • Trastuzumab
    • Mechanism
      • Monoclonal antibody against HER-2/neu (c-erbB2)
        • HER-2 is a tyrosine kinase receptor
        • Trastuzumab helps with killing cancer cells that overexpress HER-2
          • Inhibits HER-2 initiated cellular signaling and causes antibody-dependent cytotoxicity
    • Clinical use
      • HER-2 positive breast cancer
      • Gastric cancer 
    • Adverse effects
      • Cardiotoxicity