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Preventing breast cancer from spreading

Posted Mar 21 2011 12:05pm

Breast cancer can be prevented from spreading to other organs by blocking a chemical say Scientists at the UK’s Institute of Cancer Research. The Enzyme LOXL2 can be blocked, which can prevent metastasis; the spreading of disease from one organ to another.

The Institute of Cancer Research state that approximately 90% of cancer deaths are due to tumours migrating around the body, however these new findings offer the promise of reducing this figure.

Research into patients with breast cancer showed that cancer spreading and poor survival rates were due to high levels of the enzyme LOXL2. The enzyme also enables cancerous cells to escape from the breast tissue and into the bloodstream in the early stages of cancer spread.

These findings are very important in the development of new drugs, but could also be used to predict the likeliness of cancer spreading in individual patients, enabling treatment to be tailored accordingly.

Breast cancer is the most common form of cancer in women within the UK with approximately 45,000 cases diagnosed yearly.

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