View Full Version : Researchers find defects in adult stem cell niche may cause breast cancer

10-05-2005, 05:43 AM

05 Oct 2005

Researchers at Georgetown's Lombardi Comprehensive Cancer Center have found that the onset of breast cancer (http://www.medicalnewstoday.com/linkfwd.php?type=kw&link=http://www.patienthealthinternational.com/ncm.aspx?type=article&param=501572) may be due to defects in somatic adult stem cell niches that exist long before tumors develop.

The research, published in the October 2005 issue of Tissue and Cell, is the first to examine the highly specialized microenvironment, termed the stem cell niche, which surrounds adult stem cells, and its role in breast cancer development. These niches are key regulators of stem cell activity in mammary tissue, and defects that develop in these groups of cells can give rise to breast cancer.

"This study helps us understand adult stem cells differently than we previously did. Particularly, when looking for the causes of breast cancer (http://www.medicalnewstoday.com/linkfwd.php?type=kw&link=http://www.patienthealthinternational.com/ncm.aspx?type=article&param=501572), we must take into account the stem cell as well as the environment that surrounds it," said Robert Dickson, Ph.D., co-author of the paper and co-director of the breast cancer (http://www.medicalnewstoday.com/linkfwd.php?type=kw&link=http://www.patienthealthinternational.com/ncm.aspx?type=article&param=501572) program at the Lombardi Comprehensive Cancer Center.

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