Breast cancer metastasis is a complex phenomenon that generally makes breast cancer treatment more difficult and as a result can worsen breast cancer outcomes. Breast cancer metastasis involves changes to the breast cancer tumor and the connective tissue surrounding it (epithelial-mesenchymal transdifferentiation) and is often driven by a variety of growth factors like epidermal growth factor (EGF) and transforming growth factor (TGF). New breast cancer research examining the mechanisms related to breast cancer metastasis has discovered that specific components of the TGF and EGF breast cancer cell growth pathways may be key regulators in breast cancer metastasis.
In the TGF studyresearchers discovered that transforming growth factor-beta activates a protein called Dab2which induced the tissue changes that lead to metastasis. Blocking the Dab2 protein prevented these tissue changes.
In a separate studybreast cancer researchers reported that a specific form of the SRC-3 cell protein is a critical part of epidermal growth factor's ability to stimulate cell growth and induce breast cancer metastasis. This protein is overexpressed in breast cancer cells and was a missing factor responsible for EGF's ability to induce cell migrationan essential part of breast cancer metastasis.
These two new breast cancer research studiespublished within the last few daysprovide some fascinating insight into the cellular mechanisms responsible for the release of breast cancer cells from the breast tumor and their spread to others parts of the body. By gaining a better understanding of these mechanismsthe medical community will one day be able to design new breast cancer treatments designed to prevent these changes from taking place.
In the meantimedon't forget that we can take steps to reduce our risk of getting breast cancer. Read my book Fight Now: Eat & Live Proactively Against Breast Cancer (www.fightBCnow.com) to learn more.