Scientists unravel resistance to breast cancer treatment

// Health | Scientists unravel resistance to breast cancer treatment
Email to a friend Plain text Print version // Font size: Decrease font Enlarge font

By Sola Ogundipe

A research team from the university of Manchester’s Paterson Institute for Cancer Research has identified a molecular flag that will help doctors predict which patients will respond best to complementary hormone therapy with tamoxifen.

The research, funded by the charity Breakthrough Breast Cancer and published in Plos One, looked at the connective tissue surrounding the tumour, which is known to send signals that help the cancer to grow.

The team, part of the Manchester Cancer Research Centre, found that
fibroblast cells — the cells that make up connective tissue in our
bodies -differ in their characteristics from patient to patient and can give clues about tamoxifen treatment response

Tamoxifen — used alongside traditional chemotherapy and radiotherapy
– blocks the female hormone estrogen that, in certain breast cancers, is required by the tumour to grow and it has been shown to improve cancer survival rates by up to one third.

However, about one third of patients with the appropriate type of breast cancer — known as estrogen receptor positive breast cancer –do not respond to tamoxifen or develop resistance to the drug.

Estrogen receptor positive breast cancer is the most common form of
the disease accounting for 70 percent of cases.

When used alongside traditional cancer therapies, Tamoxifen has been shown to be highly effective in some breast cancer patients, but, in a third of cases, the result has not been encouraging.

Scientists hope to predict which patients will respond to tamoxifen,and those who won’t, so the correct treatment is provided instantly which will improve disease outcomes.

They analysed tissue samples from 564 women with invasive breast
cancer, some of whom were given tamoxifen and some who weren’t; this allowed us to make a comparison between treatment responses.

They discovered that women who had low levels of a protein known as
pERK in their cancer-associated fibroblasts did not respond to
tamoxifen. Testing patients for the pERK flag could help doctors
determine whether tamoxifen is an appropriate treatment for their
patient or whether alternative therapies should be explored, so saving time and money.

The researchers now plan to further study molecular flags that are characteristic for cancer-associated fibroblasts.

Understanding how fibroblasts help the tumour to grow will allow the development of new strategies to block their harmful signals and overcome drug resistance.

4 types of breast cancer identified

A comprehensive study has categorized breast cancer into four types, already leading to new ideas on how to treat the different strains.

Scientists are now a step closer to understanding the genetic origins of the four major subtypes of breast cancer.

According to  Nature, the study is part of a project that includes
similar studies of lung and colon cancer.

A consortium of researchers analysed tumours from 825 patients, using six different technologies to examine subsets of the tumours for various defects.

The four main subtypes confirmed by the study are luminal A, luminal B, HER2-enriched and basal-like.

One key finding shows that one of the subtypes is genetically more
similar to ovarian tumours than to other breast cancer tumours.

Patients with that specific mutation, categorized as basal-like, may benefit from the same type of chemotherapy used to treat ovarian cancer, the researchers said.

Cancer patients with luminal A had much better prognoses than those
with luminal B, which could help doctors understand when to treat
patients more aggressively.

And researchers are planning a new clinical trial based on the
findings for HER2 patients, who often — but not always — respond
well to a drug called Herceptin, allowing a more targeted group to get the drug (and others, who may not respond to it, to avoid it).

Comments are moderated. Please keep them clean and brief.

Tagged : No tags for this article

Headlines Newsview all

Niger Delta Avengers Threatens Something Big Is About To Happen And It Will Shock The Whole World

Resurgent militant group, the Niger Delta Avengers has threatened to carry out more devastating attacks on gas pipeline in the region. The group warned the Nigerian ... Full story

List Of Heroes And Villains Of Nigeria’s Democracy

The democracy Nigeria enjoys today did not come on a silver platter; some Nigerians fought for it. With their lives, blood, tears and freedom, these ... Full story

President Buhari Reveals He Is Under Great Pressure To Devalue The Naira

It is exactly one year since Muhammadu Buhari was sworn in as President of the Federal Republic of Nigeria. Ahead of the official commemoration of ... Full story

Professor Adesegun Banjo - I lost my wife, son, money to pro-democracy struggle

Professor Adesegun Banjo, a medical doctor and scientist, who launched an armed struggle against the military junta of General Sani Abacha tells KAYODE FALADE about ... Full story

Our Amnesty Program Has Succeeded Says Gov Ortom

Gov Samuel Ortom of Benue on Saturday said the amnesty programme of his administration had succeeded in reducing crime in the state. Ortom was reacting ...

Osibanjo Reveals Why Buhari Cannot Spend Recovered Looted Funds

The Vice President of Nigeria, Prof. Yemi Osinbajo on Friday, explained reasons why it is difficult for the government to spend monies recovered from corrupt ...

Read The Soft Side Of President Buhari

They were called the unsmiling duo. In his first incarnation as Nigerian leader, the then Major General Muhammadu Buhari was paired with another top brass ...

CD Warns British Government: Return Our Loot Or Get Ready For Protest

The Campaign for Democracy on Friday asked the British Government to return Nigeria’s looted fund in its custody or be ready to face massive protest. It ... Full story

British Auditors Query N2.1 Billion Incestuous Transactions In Christ Embassy’s Accounts

Auditors appointed by the United Kingdom’s Charity Commission to review the accounts of the UK branch of the popular Christ Embassy, have raised eyebrows over ... Full story

11 INEC Officials Confess To EFCC: We Received N120m From N23bn Shared By Diezani

According to the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, eleven officials of the Independent National Electoral Commission who supervised the 2015 general elections in Gombe State ... Full story

BREAKING NEWS: Niger Delta Avengers Blow Up Shell And Agip Oil Facility

The Niger Delta Avengers have again blown up pipelines in the Niger Delta. The destruction of the pipelines was said to have been carried out at ...

Comment on: Scientists unravel resistance to breast cancer treatment

Rate this article

0

Breaking News

OMG: I Want To Be Lesbian Says Cossy Orjiakor

cossyControversial Nollywood actress, Cossy Orjiakor has indicated her readiness to become a lesbian for a personality. The Nollywood queen of boobs, on her Twitter handle @ ... Full story

Torres Ready For Game Of His Life Against Real Madrid

Fernando Torres is dreaming of eclipsing his Champions League triumph with Chelsea and making history for the second time in the competition by leading Atletico ...

Mourniho Determined To Gain Revenge On Chelsea

Newly appointed manager of Manchester United Jose Mourinho wants to gain revenge on former club Chelsea. Mourinho, 53, is on a mission to show the Blues ...

Iwobi Sad To Lose Jersey No 45

Arsenal youngster Alex Iwobi has admitted he is “gutted” he will no longer wear jersey No 45 in the new season. Iwobi will now wear the ...

Zidane: We Deserve To Be In The Final

Real Madrid boss Zinedine Zidane says his team deserve to be in tonight's Champions League final. Zidane expects a great game against Atletico Madrid. He said: "We've ...

Gov Wike Spotted With Players During Yobo's Testimonial Match

Governor Nyesom Wike of Rivers state was spotted with the stars and players during the much publicized testimonial match of veteran Nigerian player Joseph Yobo. See ...

Lord Of The Pitch: The Return Of ‘The Broken One’

By Abayomi Kalejaye In J. R. R. Tolkien’s epic adventure trilogy, Lord of the Rings, the ephemeral defeat of the villain, Sauron, by the hand of ...

Adekunle Gold Opens Up On How Following A Girl To Church Changed His Life

YBNL singer, Adekunle Gold, has opened up on how he switched from his Islam faith to becoming a full fletched Christian. Gold also mentioned that his ...

Barcelona's Busquets Signs New Contract

Barcelona midfielder Sergio Busquets has signed a new five-year deal with the club. Busquets, 27, has established himself as one of the best defensive midfielders in ...