Hmm. Now the University of Michigan has found that certain women with estrogen-positive breast tumors were not helped by the nasty chemo drug Taxol. These women had tumors that did not express a protein called HER-2. This is a crude rendering of the findings, which you can read about here.

What does this mean for Cancer Bitch? That's always the question, isn't it? Otherwise, she would be Cancer Sweet-One. Cancer Bitch just looked at her pathology report and read the notes she took at the first meeting with the oncologist, and saw that she was borderline HER-2 negative. So she sort of expressed the protein. The Michigan study found that "women whose tumors were HER-2-negative and estrogen-receptor-positive had no additional benefit from" Taxol. Which, as loyal readers may remember, was the drug that made my bones ache, and after that, the stuff that was supposed to help the ache flung me into the valley of despair.

To further complicate matters, I didn't have one of the drugs in the usual chemo triumverate of ACT (Adriamycin, Cytoxan, Taxol) because it was feared that C might be dangerous because of my blood disorder. (High platelet count, in layperson's terms.) Which reminds me of the story of the little old Jewish lady who went to her first live theater performance. She saw the lead actor fall to his death on stage and she jumped up and shouted, Give him chicken soup! Her embarrassed, American-born son tries to explain acting to her and at the same time to shush her, and she insists, undaunted: It couldn't hoit!

So I guess that's the notion when it comes to giving Taxol to Cancer Bitches whose HER-2 status is borderline.

Where does that leave you, dear reader, if you happen to have had cancer that fed on estrogen and that didn't express (secrete?) HER-2? Ask your oncologist, says the article in Science Daily. Don't jump to conclusions, say the scientists, based on our conclusions.