A new research on the link between inflammatory processes and cancer may lead to an effective breast cancer treatment. The study conducted by University of Michigan Comprehensive Cancer Center and Georgia Regents University revealed that a proteins which lead the inflammatory pattern fails to shut down in patients with triple negative breast cancer treatment, causing the cancer cells to grow.
Researchers found that the stem cells in the body grow into cancer cells and eventually cause metastasis.
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The protein is guilty for cancer
Researchers have isolated protein called SOCS3, which is not visible in the tests for triple negative breast cancer cells, but detectable in normal cells. This particular protein becomes invisible in cancer patients because it decomposes itself and blocks the normal response of the body to ill cells. In other words, SOCS3 doesn’t allow the body to stop the cancer cells to reproduce in high number.
Cancer linked to inflammation
Scientists have known for some time that there is a link between cancer and inflammation, but they needed to understand better this link and how does it function. A reputed professor of oncology, Max S. Wicha, M.D., highlights that if researchers can find a way to block the loop inflammatory process, they may develop a cure for one of the most aggressive types of cancer-triple negative breast cancer.
There is no effective therapy at the moment for triple negative cancer
All molecular therapies targeting cancer at this moment are based on hormones, like estrogen and progesterone, while others work on the protein HER2, but none of them is effective on triple negative breast cancer, leading to a high mortality rate in patients with this type of cancer.
A possible new therapy
Researchers tested a substance named bortezomib in mice caring triple negative cancer and discovered that it can prevent the SOCS3 protein from degrading, thus breaking the inflammation and stopping the growth of more cancer cells from stem cells. Bortezomib has been used until now in treatments against blood cancer multiple myeloma.
Previous encouraging results
Same researchers have previously shown that inflammatory protein interleukin6, or IL6, can be used to inhibit the development of cancer cells. By adding bortezomib to IL6 they might get better response from patients. Researchers now look forward to conduct a clinical trial with the medicine. The fact that it is already used to treat some illnesses is encouraging.
Statistics on cancer
Further research is needed before undergoing a clinical trial with bortezomib and researchers hope the results they had found can be applied to other types of cancer as well. There are more than 235.000 American patients diagnosed with cancer every year and more than 40.000 of them die from it.