npj Precision Oncology new online journal shares discovery of breast cancer inhibitor
Nature Partner Journal Precision Oncology today published research identifying a new target that can inhibit breast cancer.
In recent research, targeting the estrogen receptor (ER) as a strategy has been the gold standard for breast cancer chemoprevention or preventing breast cancer recurrence, but its benefit is limited to ER-positive tumors. Cyclooxygenases (COXs) have been implicated in mammary tumorigenesis and the researchers sought to identify the key prostaglandin responsible for the pro-neoplastic effect of COXs and develop prostaglandin-targeted strategies for breast cancer chemoprevention or therapy.
Immunohistochemical analysis revealed that either thromboxane A2 synthase 1 (TBXAS1) or the thromboxane A2 receptor (TBXA2R) is highly expressed in human breast tumors as well as premalignant lesions, but not in normal mammary tissues. Clinically, the thromboxane A2 (TXA2) pathway might be associated with HER2-positive and axillary lymph node metastasis in human breast cancer. We found that the TXA2 pathway was required for breast cancer cell growth, anchorage-independent growth and invasion capabilities.

Finally and importantly, researchers discovered that switching off TXA2 biosynthesis effectively suppressed either MMTV-HER2-driven mammary tumorigenesis or breast cancer metastasis in preclinical animal models.

In conclusion, this study established a critical pathophysiological role of the TXA2 pathway in breast cancer, and provided a rationale for introducing a strategy targeting TXA2 for breast cancer chemoprevention and therapy.

” Breast cancer is the most common type of cancer in American women, with the exception of skin cancer,” said Dr. Zigang Dong, Executive Director of The Hormel Institute, University of Minnesota. “Breast cancer is not one disease; rather it is several diseases that behave differently. Research such as this seeks to control and prevent progression in an effort to preserve human health and extend lives.”

Research collaborators include Drs. Haitao Li, Mee-Hyun Lee, Kangdong Liu, Ting Wang, Mengaqiu Song, Yaping Han, Ke Yao, Hua Xie, Feng Zhu, Michael Grossmann, Margot Cleary, Wei Chen, Ann M. Bode and Zigang Dong from the institutions of The Hormel Institute, University of Minnesota, Austin, Minnesota, USA, The China-US (Henan) Hormel Institute, Zhengzhou, Henan, China and the School of Food Science and Technology, Jiangnan University, Wuxi, Jiangsu, China.

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NPJ/Precision Oncology celebrated its March 2017 launch at the national AACR (American Association for Cancer Research) conference on Monday in Washington DC. The event drew thousands of cancer researchers and also former US Vice President Joseph Biden, a national speaker for the “Moonshot Initiative” to further and support cancer research progress.

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