Friday, January 12, 2007

Research News for Triple Negs!

In the Triple Neg section I have described to you what makes us tick.... or rather what makes our cancer cells tick. To review, it is a little thing called the Epidermal Growth Factor Receptor. What is this?? It is part of the cell of an ER/PR Negative cancer that is in abundance...abundance meaning that it helps the cancer cells to grow. There has not been a whole lot done to counter-act the EGFR.

They have found that the ligands in Flax Seeds help reduce it. That is why triplenegs are told to sprinkle them on their cereal or in their yogurt every day.

It is important to note here that the HER2 oncogene also has in abundance the EGFR. But triple neg means we are negative for the HER2 gene. HOWEVER, with all the recent breakthrough studies from Herceptin and now the newer HER2 drugs, they are finding that triple negs MIGHT- emphasis on MIGHT- have instead a HER1 oncogene. And that is good because???? That is good because Tykerb, the newest HER2 drug, also targets HER1. SO if we negative girls have HER1 then TYKERB MAY BE IN OUR FUTURE.

Now to today's breaking news... and believe me negative girls don't get to see much breaking news.... they have discovered a drug for rheumatoid arthritis targets and eliminates EGFR....
can you say HOPE?

Here is the article:
Washington, Jan. 12: US researchers have found that an active ingredient in a drug currently being tested for its efficacy in treating rheumatoid arthritis, may also serve as an effective means of treating one of the deadliest forms of breast cancer one day.

Researchers with the US Department of Energy’s Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory (Berkeley Lab) have demonstrated that by inactivating the protease enzyme, known as TACE, tumour cells can be deprived of a key factor needed for their proliferation.

They say that the inhibition of TACE activity reverts the malignant phenotype of tumorous breast cancer cells by blocking the Epidermal Growth Factor Receptor (EGFR) signaling pathway, a key factor in the control of cell division.

"We have shown that inhibition of the TACE protease in breast cancer cells blocks the shedding of two critical growth factor proteins and results in an inhibition of a key signaling pathway that controls cell division," said Paraic Kenny, a post-doctoral cell biologist with the research group of Mina Bissell in Berkeley Lab’s Life Sciences Division.

"Based on analysis of cells grown in three-dimensional cultures, the inhibition of this protease results in the reversion of the malignant phenotype of these breast cancer cells and switches their behavior back to a phenotype very reminiscent of non-malignant breast epithelial cells," Kenny added.

Several previous studies had indicated that TACE acts like "molecular scissors" that release from the cell surface a pair of ligands called Amphiregulin and TGF-alpha, which active EGFR.

In the present study, the researchers have found that by targeting TACE with either molecular inhibitors or short interfering RNAs (siRNAs), Amphiregulin and TGF-alpha ligands could effectively be blocked, which would in turn lead to the inhibition of EGFR signaling and the reversion of malignant characteristics in tumor cells.

"We have designed an entirely new way of targeting EGFR signaling in breast cancer. Almost all the work to date has involved the use of antibodies that stick to kinases or drugs that block kinase activities," said Kenny.

The researchers have successfully tested their protease blocking approach on several different breast cancer cell lines, besides founding that tumors that produce the highest levels of TACE and the TGF-alpha ligand pose the greatest risk to women.

They have also suggested that companies that have developed the new generation TACE inhibitors for the treatment of rheumatoid arthritis to consider evaluating their benefits in cancer patients too.

"Women with those types of tumors would seem to be poorly served by existing treatments and may stand to benefit from therapies that are based on the inhibition of TACE activity. We would like to see some of the companies who have developed the new generation TACE inhibitors for treatment of rheumatoid arthritis also consider evaluating them in cancer patients," said Kenny.

Kenny stressed that the importance of EGFR to so many different tumor types, including lung, head and neck, bladder, colorectal and kidney, makes it likely that "TACE inhibition has the potential to be an effective means of stopping tumor growth for EGFR-dependent cancers outside the breast as well."

The study has been published in the Journal of Clinical Investigation. (ANI)

Baby steps I know! but at least we are walking!!

Sunday, January 7, 2007


This is my first post on my first blog.
I want to welcome everyone who visits here.

This blog is dedicated to every woman who has been touched by breast cancer. It is not limited to anything. We cover every aspect of this disease from diagnosis, surgeries, treatment, getting through treatment, living with cancer, metastatic disease and even losing someone to The Beast.

ER/PR Negs are welcome to post anything you want! I know your frustration!!

Got mets? Don't be afraid to post here. You won't scare anyone. If we can help you in any way we will.

Research and CAM info is greatly appreciated!!!

So let's see how this goes- OK?

Big hello to all my sisters on BC.o!