Sources: Colorado Cancer Blogs; American Association for Cancer Research; BBC Health News

BreastCancerAwarenessMALE sex hormones, androgens, may provide another tool to fight breast cancer in women.  Researchers from the University of Colorado Cancer Center have discovered that many breast cancers possess androgen receptors on their surface, and that male hormones like testosterone fuel the tumour’s growth.  Their research was presented to a meeting of the American Association for Cancer Research.

Hormones, primarily female hormones, Estrogen and Pogesterone, have long been thought to be involved in breast cancer growth and limtation.  The widely-used, and highly toxic, breast cancer drug Tamoxifen works by blocking Estrogen receptors to stop the growth of breast cancer cells.  Adding anti-androgen drugs has the potential to improve treatment of women with breast cancer.

According to lead researcher, Dr. Jennifer Richer, Patients who who relapse while on Tamoxifen but who also have androgen receptors might have the most to gain from this new type of treatment.”  “We are excited to move toward clinical trials of anti-androgen therapies in breast cancer,” Richer says. “And this study shows that patients with a high AR/ER ratio who relapse while on estrogen targeting therapies might be good candidates for this kind of therapy.”

The finding of androgen receptors (AR) as a potential target in breast cancer is especially important in light of its prevalence in breast cancers that don’t express other hormone receptor targets or have developed resistance to treatments that target estrogen dependence. 77% of breast cancers are positive for AR, including 88% of cancers that are estrogen receptor positive, 59% of those that are HER2 positive, and 20-32% of triple negative breast cancers.

The trials are in their infancy, however, positive breast cancer research news is always welcomed as breast cancer continues to be a leading killer of women.

The Lewis Law Firm has a long history of representing women with Ovarian, Cervical, Endometrial and breast cancer and their families in Pennsylvania and New Jersey.  If you or a loved one have been diagnosed with breast cancer which was misdiagnosed or diagnosed late, contact the Lewis Law Firm  for a FREE consultation and review of your case, today.