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T-cadherin affects blood vessel growth in breast cancer, hormone from fat cells may play a role
Date:4/4/2008

ma breast tumors, whereas the knockouts formed poorly-differentiated breast tumors with fewer blood vessels. When the adenocarcinoma tumors were transplanted into normal and T-cadherin-deficient mammary glands the knockouts were deficient in growing new blood vessels to the graft.

Stunting blood vessel growth restricts tumors and prolongs survivala strategy behind anti-angiogenesis cancer drugs like Avastinso these results were somewhat expected, says Dr. Ranscht. But what surprised us, she adds, was that even though our models survived longer, their tumor pathology worsened. Without T-cadherin-mediated vascularization, breast cancer cells consistently metastasized to the lungs, and this did not happen in the control mice where the tumors were highly vascularized.

The reasons for this trend are not clear: loose connections between vascular cells may make it easier for tumor cells to break off and enter the blood stream, or low blood flow and oxygen levels in the tumor environment may cause free radicals to build up, spurring further mutations and malignancy.

Either way, says Dr. Ranscht, Our work provides a cautionary example that restricting tumor angiogenesis might result in more aggressive disease in the long run. Thus, anti-angiogenic therapies should be carefully evaluated, because if growth at the primary tumor site slows but at the same time women develop more aggressive, metastatic cancers, then it is imperative to develop and add treatments that prevent this.

This study also showed for the first time in a living model that T-cadherin is essential for binding adiponectin, a hormone produced by fatty tissue that is released in inversely proportional amounts to body fat. Adiponectin has a protective effect against metabolic diseases including diabetes, hypertension, heart disease, and stroke; now for the first time it is linked in a living model with vascular function, a relationship that the Burnham team is still expl
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Contact: Andrea Moser
amoser@burnham.org
858-646-3146
Burnham Institute
Source:Eurekalert  

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