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Three Startling New Discoveries Have Just Been Made About Breast Cancer to Help You Prevent the Disease

By Andrew Alpin, 1 February 2018

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The fight against breast cancer is an unending one where the disease rears its ugly face perennially tricking patients into believing it is in remission. There have been many cases where the disease has reappeared months and years after treatments. In equal measure, there are many who have been wise enough to check the disease in its early stages and escaped the shackles of breast cancer. Today, however, the world can look towards new hope as new discoveries are being made in the research for a through cure for breast cancer.

Three latest discoveries in the fight against breast cancer

The latest new discoveries are a milestone in the fight against the disease taking a huge toll wherein 2018 alone it is expected that at least 266,120 new cases of invasive breast cancer will be detected. However, these three new discoveries will throw ample light on how to manage and prevent the disease.

fight against breast cancer

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1 Research discovers an aggressive protein responsible for the spread of breast cancer

A new research has just uncovered a protein that helps the spread of breast cancer. The findings were published in the journal Oncogene and may even lead to new therapies in invasive breast cancer. The main cause of the death from breast cancer is metastasis or the spread from the main tumor to various parts of the body.

The new study led by Dr. Ainhoa Mielgo Department of Cancer Studies at the University of Liverpool, UK and first author Lucy Ireland, Ph.D. sought to achieve  “A better understanding of the mechanisms underlying the metastatic spreading of breast cancer is critical to improving treatment and patient outcome.”

new research

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Earlier studies showed how IGF hormones help tumor progression

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Mielgo and her team researched macrophages, a group of immune cells that assist in the spread of breast cancer. Such cells are found in plenty in a breast cancer environment and they either stop or spread the disease. The study conducted experiments to see how exactly did such cells spread the disease.

The researchers used the help of earlier studies that showed how macrophages displayed increased levels of IGF (insulin growth factors) in various types of cancer.

Earlier studies

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IGF hormones were present in cancer tumors

IGF hormones stimulate growth in humans with IGF-1 and IGF-2 occurs naturally in the blood. The new study discovered both these hormones existing in breast cancer tumors that helped the disease to spread. It was mostly in macrophages that displayed a high level of the hormones causing the disease to spread to the lungs. When the research team studied breast cancer patients, they found IGF receptors present and active in almost 75% of them. In addition, those with invasive breast cancer displayed an increase of 87% inactivation of IGF 1 receptors.

IGF hormones

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IGF blockers may help to stop metastasis or spread of cancer

The team then used mice for experiments where IGF levels were blocked along with a combination of paclitaxel a chemotherapy drug used for aggressive types of breast cancer. A significant reduction in tumor cells was observed with the combination therapy. This meant that with further research, effective treatment can be formulated to prevent the growth of IGF hormones in tumors to prevent the disease.

As Dr. Mielgo explained, "I am thrilled by our findings, as the combination therapy is more effective than the current treatment in preclinical models of breast cancer."

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