Mayo Clinic breakthrough could help prevent the spread of breast cancer
Mayo Clinic researchers in Rochester have identified potential treatment options to slow the spread of breast cancer, according to findings published Monday in the scientific journal, Nature Communications.
The research suggests that breast cancer metastasis, the process by which cancer cells spread to other parts of the body, may be prevented using a class of drugs already approved the U.S. Food and Drug Administration.
“Metastasis is a hallmark of cancer and a leading cause of cancer death,” said the study's senior author, Dr. Zhenkun Lou, of Mayo Clinic. “Despite great progress in cancer therapy, the prevention of cancer metastasis is still an unfulfilled challenge.”
Dr. Lou cautions that more research is necessary. But if his findings are corroborated, it would be an "important discovery" that could lead to better prevention of metastasis in other forms of cancer.
“These findings may provide a new treatment for the prevention of cancer metastasis,” said study co-author, Dr. Matthew Goetz, an oncologist and co-leader of the Women’s Cancer Program at Mayo Clinic.
Mayo Clinic is now working on new studies that will focus on the role of the treatments, known as CDK 4/6 inhibitors, and "their potential to inhibit cancer metastasis in women with triple-negative breast cancer who are at highest risk for cancer metastasis," said Goetz.
While trending downward, breast cancer remains the second leading cause of cancer deaths among women (only lung cancer kills more women each year). The American Cancer Society estimates that about 40,610 women in the U.S. will die from breast cancer in 2017.
More information on this breakthrough can be found on Mayo's website.
(Cover photo: Canva)