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Linchpin gene may be useful target for new breast cancer therapies
Date:9/16/2007

found at the cancer cell membrane.

Importantly, the team also showed that these effects inhibited tumor growth. Specifically, the treated cancer cells did not grow in response to estrogen and establishment of tumors in mice was delayed.

The finding suggests that there are many pathways that allow cells to respond to estrogen, and that TFAP2C is a central player in controlling hormone response.

"Targeting this gene may be a better way to develop drugs to treat hormone-responsive breast cancers because it targets multiple different pathways," Weigel said.

The results also may explain why tamoxifen, which targets a single pathway, is less effective that aromatase inhibitors, which likely affect many estrogen pathways.

Weigel noted that advancing understanding of estrogen regulation and hormone-response in breast cancer is just one part of a larger focus on breast health at the UI.

"The UI has a great interest in breast cancer. Within the next couple of months, the UI Breast Health Clinic will be open and part of its mission is advancing both basic and clinical research in breast cancer," he said. "This study is one example of how we are moving forward in unlocking the mysteries behind what controls the ability of a breast cancer to respond to estrogen."


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Contact: Jennifer Brown
jennifer-l-brown@uiowa.edu
319-335-9917
University of Iowa
Source:Eurekalert

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