An international research group including Viennese pathologist Lukas Kenner has reviewed cases of possible association between breast implants and a form of lymphoma that may develop tumours at a later stage.
The researchers conclude that breast implants can cause a new subtype of the rare yet malignant lymphoma known as ALCL. The research results have been published in the journal Mutation Research.
Worldwide there have been 71 documented cases of patients with anaplastic large cell lymphoma (ALCL) in which researchers suspected breast implants to be the cause. ALCL is normally found in the lymph nodes, as well as in skin, lung, liver and soft tissue, but not usually in the breast.
Cases in which ALCL developed in the breast region almost exclusively involved patients who have had breast surgery. In these cases, ALCL developed around ten years after the operation. The tumours grew in the scar tissue around the implant.
Breast implants are generally safe and studies have found no association between breast surgery and other forms of cancer. ALCL itself is also an extremely rare occurrence. Among three million breast implants, there are between one and six reported cases of ALCL.
ALCL is divided into two subtypes. In one subtype, the cancerous cells produce an abnormal form of the protein ALK (anaplastic lymphoma kinase). The other type does not express ALK in tumour cells at all. While patients with ALK-positive lymphoma have a better chance of survival, the cancer is considerably more aggressive in ALK-negative cases.
Implant-related ALCL appears to form a third group. The cells do not express ALK, but patients have good survival rates. “This is a previously unrecognized, new subtype of ALCL,” Lukas Kenner explains. “We must now determine the exact causes behind its occurrence.”
The search for causes
The actual reasons why implants can cause lymphoma remain unclear. While some patients were successfully treated with chemotherapy and radiation therapy, the lymphoma in many cases subsided on its own following removal of the implant and the surrounding tissue. An abnormal immune response from the body could therefore be a cause of the cancer. Kenner and his team are now preparing for further studies in which implants and dentures will be examined in other parts of the body.
Lukas Kenner from the Medical University Vienna, the University of Veterinary Medicine, Vienna and the Ludwig Boltzmann Institute for Cancer Research cooperated for this study with scientists from Cambridge, Liverpool, Swansea and Australia. The project was funded by the British organisation Leukaemia & Lymphoma Research.
The article „Anaplastic large cell lymphoma (ALCL) and breast implants: Breaking down the evidence” by Xuan Ye, Kayvan Shokrollahi, Warren M. Rozen, Rachel Conyers, Penny Wright, Lukas Kenner, Suzanne D. Turner and Iain S. Whitaker was published in the Journal Mutation Research. DOI: 10.1016/j.mrrev.2014.08.002
About the University of Veterinary Medicine, Vienna
The University of Veterinary Medicine, Vienna in Austria is one of the leading academic and research institutions in the field of Veterinary Sciences in Europe. About 1,300 employees and 2,300 students work on the campus in the north of Vienna which also houses five university clinics and various research sites. Outside of Vienna the university operates Teaching and Research Farms. www.vetmeduni.ac.at
Prof. Lukas Kenner
University of Veterinary Medicine Vienna (Vetmeduni Vienna), Medical University Vienna, Ludwig Boltzmann Institute
T +43 664 1188385
Science Communication / Public Relations
University of Veterinary Medicine Vienna (Vetmeduni Vienna)
T +43 1 25077-1153
Dr. Susanna Kautschitsch | idw - Informationsdienst Wissenschaft
Laser activated gold pyramids could deliver drugs, DNA into cells without harm
24.03.2017 | Harvard John A. Paulson School of Engineering and Applied Sciences
What does congenital Zika syndrome look like?
24.03.2017 | University of California - San Diego
Astronomers from Bonn and Tautenburg in Thuringia (Germany) used the 100-m radio telescope at Effelsberg to observe several galaxy clusters. At the edges of these large accumulations of dark matter, stellar systems (galaxies), hot gas, and charged particles, they found magnetic fields that are exceptionally ordered over distances of many million light years. This makes them the most extended magnetic fields in the universe known so far.
The results will be published on March 22 in the journal „Astronomy & Astrophysics“.
Galaxy clusters are the largest gravitationally bound structures in the universe. With a typical extent of about 10 million light years, i.e. 100 times the...
Researchers at the Goethe University Frankfurt, together with partners from the University of Tübingen in Germany and Queen Mary University as well as Francis Crick Institute from London (UK) have developed a novel technology to decipher the secret ubiquitin code.
Ubiquitin is a small protein that can be linked to other cellular proteins, thereby controlling and modulating their functions. The attachment occurs in many...
In the eternal search for next generation high-efficiency solar cells and LEDs, scientists at Los Alamos National Laboratory and their partners are creating...
Silicon nanosheets are thin, two-dimensional layers with exceptional optoelectronic properties very similar to those of graphene. Albeit, the nanosheets are less stable. Now researchers at the Technical University of Munich (TUM) have, for the first time ever, produced a composite material combining silicon nanosheets and a polymer that is both UV-resistant and easy to process. This brings the scientists a significant step closer to industrial applications like flexible displays and photosensors.
Silicon nanosheets are thin, two-dimensional layers with exceptional optoelectronic properties very similar to those of graphene. Albeit, the nanosheets are...
Enzymes behave differently in a test tube compared with the molecular scrum of a living cell. Chemists from the University of Basel have now been able to simulate these confined natural conditions in artificial vesicles for the first time. As reported in the academic journal Small, the results are offering better insight into the development of nanoreactors and artificial organelles.
Enzymes behave differently in a test tube compared with the molecular scrum of a living cell. Chemists from the University of Basel have now been able to...
20.03.2017 | Event News
14.03.2017 | Event News
07.03.2017 | Event News
24.03.2017 | Materials Sciences
24.03.2017 | Physics and Astronomy
24.03.2017 | Physics and Astronomy