Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Genetic changes in breast tissue caused by pregnancy hormone helps prevent breast cancer

20.04.2005


A full-term pregnancy at an early age is one of the most effective ways to reduce the lifetime risk of breast cancer, according to research pathologist Irma H. Russo, M.D., of Fox Chase Cancer Center in Philadelphia. A number of studies around the world have established that a full-term pregnancy by age 20 reduces breast cancer risk by half.



Previous studies by Russo and colleagues suggest that breast cells reach full maturity--a process called differentiation--only after a full-term pregnancy. Once this process is complete, the cells are less vulnerable to cancer-causing changes. An early pregnancy confers the strongest protection by limiting the time breast cells remain immature.

"A high-susceptibility or high-risk window exists early in life, between the start of ovarian function and the first pregnancy," explained Russo. "During this period, the mammary gland has continuously varying characteristics influenced by ovarian and pituitary hormones. These traits change during pregnancy under the influence of embryonic and placental hormones."


Russo’s laboratory has demonstrated that both pregnancy and a hormone produced during pregnancy, called human chorionic gonadotropin (hCG), inhibit breast cancer in rats. The placental hormone hCG promotes full maturation of breast cells and also wards off cancerous changes in these cells later.

"This led us to postulate that this hormone might be useful for breast cancer prevention in women," Russo said. "Toward this goal, we designed experiments to learn, first, whether the protection conferred by hCG results from genetic changes specific to this hormone and, second, whether a similar genomic signature would result from either pregnancy or ovarian steroid hormones. Richard Wang, Ph.D., a postdoctoral associate in Russo’s laboratory, presented the results of the first study Sunday, April 17 at the 96th Annual Meeting of the American Association for Cancer Research. The study used virgin rats treated with a daily hCG injection compared to untreated virgin rats.

"Our results show that hCG induces permanent genetic changes in the mammary gland that are related to its breast cancer prevention effect," said Wang.

In addition to Irma Russo, Wang’s Fox Chase co-authors include Jose Russo, M.D., director of Fox Chase’s Breast Cancer and the Environment Research Center; research associates Gabriela Balogh, Ph.D., and Fathima Sheriff, M.D.; research technicians Rachael L. Fernbaugh and Patricia A. Russo; and postdoctoral associates Daniel A. Mailo, Ph.D., and Raquel Moral, Ph.D.

The second study compared four groups of rats: a pregnant group, a virgin group treated with hCG, a virgin group treated with the hormones estrogen and progesterone (ovarian steroid hormones) and an untreated group. Daniel Mailo presented the results Tuesday, April 19 at the AACR meeting.

"These data show that both hCG and pregnancy induce permanent genetic changes that do not result from steroid hormones," Mailo said. Mailo’s co-authors include Irma and Jose Russo, Sheriff, Balogh and research technician Rebecca Heulings.

A grant from the National Institutes of Health supported both studies.

Colleen Kirsch | EurekAlert!
Further information:
http://www.fccc.edu

More articles from Life Sciences:

nachricht Topologische Quantenchemie
21.07.2017 | Max-Planck-Institut für Chemische Physik fester Stoffe

nachricht Topological Quantum Chemistry
21.07.2017 | Max-Planck-Institut für Chemische Physik fester Stoffe

All articles from Life Sciences >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: 3-D scanning with water

3-D shape acquisition using water displacement as the shape sensor for the reconstruction of complex objects

A global team of computer scientists and engineers have developed an innovative technique that more completely reconstructs challenging 3D objects. An ancient...

Im Focus: Manipulating Electron Spins Without Loss of Information

Physicists have developed a new technique that uses electrical voltages to control the electron spin on a chip. The newly-developed method provides protection from spin decay, meaning that the contained information can be maintained and transmitted over comparatively large distances, as has been demonstrated by a team from the University of Basel’s Department of Physics and the Swiss Nanoscience Institute. The results have been published in Physical Review X.

For several years, researchers have been trying to use the spin of an electron to store and transmit information. The spin of each electron is always coupled...

Im Focus: The proton precisely weighted

What is the mass of a proton? Scientists from Germany and Japan successfully did an important step towards the most exact knowledge of this fundamental constant. By means of precision measurements on a single proton, they could improve the precision by a factor of three and also correct the existing value.

To determine the mass of a single proton still more accurate – a group of physicists led by Klaus Blaum and Sven Sturm of the Max Planck Institute for Nuclear...

Im Focus: On the way to a biological alternative

A bacterial enzyme enables reactions that open up alternatives to key industrial chemical processes

The research team of Prof. Dr. Oliver Einsle at the University of Freiburg's Institute of Biochemistry has long been exploring the functioning of nitrogenase....

Im Focus: The 1 trillion tonne iceberg

Larsen C Ice Shelf rift finally breaks through

A one trillion tonne iceberg - one of the biggest ever recorded -- has calved away from the Larsen C Ice Shelf in Antarctica, after a rift in the ice,...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

Closing the Sustainability Circle: Protection of Food with Biobased Materials

21.07.2017 | Event News

»We are bringing Additive Manufacturing to SMEs«

19.07.2017 | Event News

The technology with a feel for feelings

12.07.2017 | Event News

 
Latest News

Ultrathin device harvests electricity from human motion

24.07.2017 | Power and Electrical Engineering

Scientists announce the quest for high-index materials

24.07.2017 | Materials Sciences

ADIR Project: Lasers Recover Valuable Materials

24.07.2017 | Materials Sciences

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>