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Clues to pregnancy-associated breast cancer found
Date:3/29/2010

Interestingly, this response was not limited to the recently pregnant group, but also characterized more distant pregnancies as well."

A surprising finding was evidence of a protective effect of pregnancy as well, since the expression of many hormone and growth factor signaling genes suggests protection. These findings indicate that a balance between high risk inflammatory and protective hormone signaling gene expression may ultimately determine a woman's individual breast cancer risk, she said.

The researchers were not only interested in determining whether pregnancy and involution are associated with gene expression changes in the normal breast, but whether such changes stay for a short period of time or are permanent, Tonetti said.

The study is among the first to use samples from normal breast tissue to determine whether there is a time-dependent effect on breast cancer risk, she said.

The results will help understand the mechanisms behind pregnancy-associated breast cancer and will indicate potentially effective prevention strategies for women at high risk, such as use of anti-inflammatory agents. In addition, more effective therapeutic approaches may be developed based on the specific molecular pathways involved, Tonetti said.


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Contact: Sam Hostettler
samhos@uic.edu
312-355-2522
University of Illinois at Chicago
Source:Eurekalert

Page: 1 2

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