Heterogeneity in Breast Cancer

2022/06/10 Atrio 800


Heterogeneity in Breast Cancer

María Vivanco

Heterogeneity in Breast Cancer Despite recent advances, breast cancer remains the cancer with the highest incidence and highest mortality in women worldwide. Breast cancer is a heterogenous disease, with significant differences between patients, but also with a high degree of complexity within the tumour. Tumours are populated by a variety of cells, including epithelial and stromal cells, as well as a small population of cells with properties of stem cells, the cancer stem cells (CSCs). In particular, the presence of CSCs proves a challenge to therapy. CSCs are implicated in tumour initiation and resistance to current treatments, including hormone therapy and their identification and characterisation in breast cancer has opened new possibilities for treatment. We and others have identified some of the factors that drive an increase in CSC content during the development of breast cancer resistance to tamoxifen. In particular, Sox family transcription factors are potential therapeutic targets. The various approaches being used in the lab to tackle cancer heterogeneity will be discussed.

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