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Researchers develop a new cell and animal model of inflammatory breast cancer
Date:4/4/2012

, Fernandez, Cristofanilli and their colleagues developed an IRB-approved prospective protocol allowing for the collection of tissue and pleural fluid from patients with advanced IBC. The new cell line, known as FC-IBC02, was established from the pleural fluid collected from a 49-year-old patient whose cells lacked the protein HER2/neu, as well as receptors for the female hormones estrogen and progesterone. About 15 percent of breast cancer patients share these features and, as a result, they do not respond to hormonal therapies and certain medications that target these proteins. "Currently, the only option to treat these patients is chemotherapy," Fernandez says. "So it's important to have a specific model that we can use to test different drugs and see which ones work for this kind of disease."

Moreover, the researchers grew culture tumor cells derived from the patient's fluid and found that they contained a large amount of the protein tetraspanin CD151, which controls tumor cell migration and invasion. In addition, these cells formed multicellular spheroids that displayed markers of cancer stem cells, including the marker CD44. When injected into the mammary fat pad of mice, the tumor spheroids rapidly developed into tumors and spread to the lungs.

Furthermore, using the latest CytoScan HD arrays, the FCCC researchers found that these cells have multiple losses and gains across almost the whole genome, a phenomenon known as chromothripsis. In particular, FC-IBC02 cells have an amplification on chromosome 8q where the oncogene MYC is located and a deletion on chromosome 7p where tumor suppressor gene p53 is embedded. These analysis will identify novel molecular targets to fight the disease. By culturing cells from a large pool of patients, they will look for promising targets that are commonly associated with IBC as well as test new stem cell-targeting drugs that could reduce metastasis.

"I think it's a major step forward for us as
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Contact: Diana Quattrone
Diana.Quattrone@fccc.edu
215-815-7828
Fox Chase Cancer Center
Source:Eurekalert

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