'Local environment' plays key role in breast cancer progression
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IMAGE: (A) MDA-MB-231 (aggressive breast cancer cells) form epithelial-like structures (structure of the cells that incline toward to healthy tissues) with reduced aggressiveness on softer surfaces, but with increase in stiffness/rigidity… view more 

Credit: Parikh

WASHINGTON, D.C., February 21, 2018 — Breast cancer is the most commonly diagnosed cancer in women — one in eight (12.4 percent) in the U.S. will be diagnosed with it. Invasive breast cancer is dangerous for two reasons: It can aggressively spread to other organs in the body, and it is likely to recur. While treatable in the early stages via surgery or chemotherapy, as the disease progresses, the chances of recovery decrease exponentially.

Many of the drugs and therapies available today target breast cancer cells but tend to neglect the surrounding “local environment,” which includes surrounding tissues. But cancer cells and their local environment are connected, so both undergo striking chemical and physical changes during tumor development.

During the 62nd Biophysical Society Annual Meeting, held Feb. 17-21, in San Francisco, California, Deep Parikh, a doctoral candidate at Stevens Institute of Technology, will present his work exploring the role physical changes within a cancer cells’ local environment play in the aggressiveness of breast cancer.

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Article originally posted at
www.eurekalert.org

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